Project management is a vast field filled with many opportunities that a normal job really can’t offer. That being said, it can also big a massively overwhelming field if you don’t know what you’re doing. There’s a lot going on in your schedule as a project manager, so any helpful tips can go a long way. We know how helpful advice and tips can be, so we came up with a list of 10 project management tips that will help you finish your next project without a hitch.
Use the right software
Software is definitely a necessity for any successful project manager. At the very least, it makes your life a little bit easier, more organized, and definitely deserves a mention in these project management tips. Project management software is something that has developed over the years to become something that most, if not all project managers rely on.
Toggl Plan is the perfect solution to for any project manager and any team. It’s a simple Gantt chart software that allows you to create and edit timelines in a flash. It’s feature a rich software that will make your workflow much less stressful, and much more productive. Give it a try for free and see why so many people continue to use it as their go-to software.
Be ready for change
The world moves fast, and so does project management. When you’re in the midst of any project, big or small, there will come a time when plans change and the team needs to adapt. Change is inevitable sometimes, but don’t let that discourage you. Be ready for change by preparing as best you can beforehand, and constantly be on the lookout for it.
Listen to your team
Have you ever heard the saying, “Two heads are better than one?” In this case, you have multiple minds working towards the same goal. Use that to your advantage.
Have an open door policy and allow for feedback. There may be some details that you’re overlooking, or maybe just haven’t thought about yet. Nonetheless, they should have a voice just as much as you, but it’s up to you to make the final decision.
You, as the project manager, should have multiple channels of communication constantly open. In addition, you should encourage your team to do the same. Remember when we talked about how fast things can change? It’s so important that you’re able to send and receive information as soon as possible.
Even if you think you communicate well, look for ways to improve your communication skills. Be as effective and efficient as possible. Remember: time is money!
Avoid scope creep
Scope creep is when the demands of your project creep past the boundaries you set. It involves continuous and uncontrolled change that leads not only the project into failure, but your team, too. Of course, you don’t want that to happen.
Avoid this chaos by controlling the change. Be on top of the changes that may take place and train yourself to know when they’re coming. For new project managers, this can take some time, but the best way to avoid it in any circumstance is to clearly define the project from the beginning, and to watch out for when it might go off track.
Make the tough decisions
Even though you have a great team filled with knowledge and expertise, it’s up to you to make the tough decisions at the end of the day. The key here is to understand the goal of your team, and make decisions based on the future of success.
It is imperative that you know how and when to say no. if you’re team is flooded with projects and has been nonstop for a while, it’s probably not wise to take on another project. Success is defined on quality, not quantity, and most clients understand that.
Be a team player
Your job is to oversee the project, yes, but it should also be to motivate your team. When you’re making the timeline, try to add a little time in there for you to get hands-on with the project and help your team out. You don’t want to overcrowd your plate, but you most certainly want your team to know that you’re there for them.
Organization can benefit for your workflow in many different ways. By staying organized, you decrease the amount of time needed to look for things, and increase the amount of time completing tasks.
There’s really no secret to it. Everyone has their own methods of organization. What you should take away from this is that you should be able to find things quickly. By spending the few extra minutes it takes to put things in order before the project begins, you potentially save hours down the road.
Milestones are a big deal when working on a project. A milestone is a checkpoint where you can say, “I know this is done, let’s move on.” As you can imagine, it’s pretty important to define these milestones at the beginning of the project, so that confusion is avoided. Be clear about what needs to be done by the milestone, and constantly check-up on the progression to make sure you meet the deadline.
Celebrate success and learn from failure
Success is a big deal. You and your team have made it through an entire project and come out of it successful. That should be celebrated by letting your team know that they’ve done well. Have a pizza party. Give an extra day off. Do whatever you have to do to let your team know that the project was a success.
Success is the goal, but it isn’t guaranteed. Learn from mistakes and failures. Don’t let them define your team, but learn from them, instead. Document closely what you did, and change up the plan a little bit the next time around.
These are just a few helpful project management tips to guide you through the project management world. Always be on the lookout for new ways to improve and learn, and don’t shy away from change. The most important tip anyone can give you is to put all your effort, determination, and passion into every project. Follow these project management tips, and you’ll finish your next project without a hitch.