• Understand company’s objectives, customers, products, services
What is your company’s mission statement? How does the product and or service you will be offering align with the mission statement? Who will be your target “customers”? If you have a solid understanding of these issues before you start, it will be easier to direct the process.
• Establish the big picture
Project management is all about details, but you can’t secure the details if you don’t see the big picture. Did you ever put together a jigsaw puzzle? All the little pieces won’t come together if you can’t look at the picture on the box. Being able to see what you are creating helps to determined which piece goes where.
• Set boundaries
Remember the jigsaw puzzle. Most people sort the edge pieces first and put them together – then fill in the rest of the pieces. Knowing where the boundaries are, makes it easier to put together. Likewise, you need to set your boundaries before the project begins. What is your budget limit? What are your time constraints? What security measures are necessary?
• Your team – delegate roles and responsibilities
Everybody has different talents and personalities. Choosing the right person for each role within a project can make the difference between success and failure. Talk to your team – take time to understand and know each person. If you start the project and then realize you made some mistakes in assignments, don’t be afraid to make changes. Everybody will be happier, and the project will run smoother, in the end. Ensure that each person understands his/her role, and how it fits into the big picture.
• Create a work schedule
Break the work into steps. Evaluate each step and set a time limit. Establish a schedule with specific progress checkpoints along the way. Include time for meetings and communication. Create the big picture and fill in the step-by-step process.
Maintain consistent communication with everyone involved. Take time to clarify points. Ask for feedback to confirm they heard the message you sent.
• Inspire teamwork
Create an atmosphere of collaboration. Give value to everyone’s contribution. Point out how every part comes together to create a whole. Your attitude as leader will set the tone for everyone involved. Create friendly competition, but only if it encourages the sense of team. Reward progress points with food provided by the company.
• Monitor progress
Keep a record of each step that is accomplished. Check to ascertain progress is flowing according to the set schedule and according to set standards.
• Identify problems and institute changes
Watch for danger signals. If you see a problem forming, deal with it immediately and effectively. It is better to make changes and adjustments as you go along than having to comeback and redo later.
• Tie up the loose ends
When the project is finished, tie up all the loose ends. Make sure every i is dotted and t crossed.
• Present finished project
Deliver/present the project to appropriate personnel. Don’t’ let it just hang there – present it with flourish and with closure.
• Give credit where credit is due
When presenting the finished project, give credit appropriately. You lead a team of people – be sure to include them in the process. If someone made an exceptionally outstanding contribution, acknowledge it. Make sure each person involved in the work is also involved receiving credit and thanks. Present awards where appropriate – such as thank you notes, gift card, extra PTO, etc.
Every project has the potential for failure and for success. Follow these steps and make sure your project is a success. Contact Springborn. We help candidates find work with Portland and Bangor, Maine companies who will use and appreciate their project management skills.