Projected success: some insights to meaningful PM methods
Managing projects, of any size requires a process from start to finish. At Purple Hills, our project managers are nimble and highly skilled at anticipating and dealing with challenges as they occur, through our proven step by step process. Here are a few general insights into how we go about seeing projects through from a project manager’s point of view.
Devil in the detail
It’s really important to have a detailed project scope, approved by all key stakeholders. This may include milestones and a timeline and of course a budget to cover all the work. Getting this information in writing from the outset is crucial, as change commonly occurs and it’s important to have a reference point to go back to if things start to waver from the original outline (and budget). As part managing the detail, equip yourself and the team with management software to keep everyone updated and linked.
As a project manager, you have to not only manage a project but expectations too. It’s vital that everyone on the team – and that includes the client – is aware of and understands the project’s limitations and scope. A budget and timeframe can be met if expectations stay on course; but if expectations become unreasonable, targets can be thrown out of whack and the project could be destined to fail. This impacts a project manager’s reputation.
Measure the project’s success not just at the end but all the way through. Implement milestones to achieve and mark as ticked or complete as you go. This is particularly important if working on a long project. Milestones set for certain intervals will help you ensure you’re either staying on track or have somehow lost sight of the project’s goals.
Making sure skill-sets match up with specific functions and ensure everyone understands expectations and is confident to ask questions. Open communications are essential.
Keep calm and take the lead
As project manager, you’re in charge of this project and it’s your job to get the best out of everyone, including those who have not worked together before. Steady the ship through any turbulence.
Risk assessment should be done early in the piece but sometimes a risk emerges and becomes unacceptable. Take corrective or preventative action as soon as possible.
Happily ever after
Once a project has been completed, it’s important to do a “post-mortem” report, even if it is only for internal purposes. You can pinpoint what went right and what went wrong, determine what could or should have been done differently, and establish the best practices for use in future undertakings.