7 Tips on How to be a great Project Manager
Written by Jasmin Ali
Project management may sound easy, but taking up the role of a Project manager requires sword play with the right wit.
Many a times, when the Project Manager is at fault or does not abide to an employee’s needs, the company is bound to lose a valuable resource. A good Project Manager is hard to find, but a great Project Manager? It is harder. Understanding the goals of the company, project deadlines, managing time effectively and being a good boss to employees can be easy if these seven tips are followed:
1. AVOID MICROMANAGEMENT
Project managers tend to get extremely observant and controlling when a project is assigned to their team. It might be because of irrational deadlines, lack of time, underestimating the power of their resource and panicking about proving their position. This leads to constant micromanagement where Project Managers constantly nag or monitor employees and their work, breathing down their shoulders through the entire day or week, until the project is done and dusted. Sometimes, employees are never given an off and might be asked to work during the weekends which would eventually drain them out. A great Project Manager understands that every employee is human enough to have their own time and space to figure out how much they can deliver and how fast they can. Employees should be given their own freedom to work around schedules and plan out how they can deliver before deadlines. Micromanagement only demotivates employees and puts them in a position where they are rendered as incapable of deliveries unless monitored. A great manager avoids micromanagement like the plague and uses it when and wherever necessary.
2. EVALUATE PRIORITIES
Many project managers follow agile methodology where different parts of the project that have various dependencies are mapped out and listed in the beginning. With time, priorities change. Re-evaluating priorities in a periodic manner and changing work deliveries is important. Priorities are never the same throughout a project and it takes a great manager to find the loops and holes of it, to deliver projects on time.
3. MANAGE TIME EFFECTIVELY
Time management is a great manager’s number one priority. Maintaining a balance between being productive during the productive hours at work and allowing employees to have their free time is important. Project managers must make sure that employees get the work done on time, without stressing them out by pressurizing them. Any good resource would work efficiently when the work is handed over to them, without the need of a push. Figuring out the good and the bad egg from the team is crucial. Laying out tasks and targets for employees to meet during each day is a good way to start.
4. COMMUNICATION IS KEY
Good communication is good project management any day. The ability to communicate to the stakeholders as well as the team effectively can drive a project to be delivered on time. Giving out broken promises to stakeholders and urging employees to complete their tasks as promised would cause huge problems to the team as well as to the clients. Being an effective communicator between the team and the clients is important.
5. UNDERSTANDING PSYCHOLOGY
They say that great project managers understand their employees. Keeping track of how much an employee is able to deliver, how fast they can and what fields and skills they are good at is important. The ability to drive employees to complete tasks they love accomplishing and are good at. Knowing your team’s strengths and weaknesses and allotting tasks similar to what they can and cannot do is vital.
6. EQUIPPING THE TEAM
Technology is an ever-evolving stream of today and to be knowledgeable in all kinds of software and technology is a challenging task. Being up-to-date on technology and exposing your team to the existence of such, is important. Project management training for employees to be knowledgeable on various fields that are emerging in the current technology-driven world can bring the company a lot of projects and profit.
7. GREAT PROBLEM-SOLVING SKILLS
When there’s a project assigned to you, there will be problems assigned to you as well. These problems can arise at any time of the project. Problems can vary from being related to the employees within the team, health-issues or emergencies that occur mid-way or at the time of delivery, misinterpreting requirements, missing out on SLDC processes, bug issues and problems that are completely unexpected. Being a great problem-solver by understanding what is to be done at such situations is the best trait of a great project manager. A great project manager works towards the success of the company and its products and it is vital to know how to handle unexpected situations in a witty way.
Being a good project manager takes time while being a great project manager takes experience. Using the right kind of skill at the right time and handling organizational problems takes time in understanding what each member of the team is capable of. Believing that your team can perform better at every step of the project is crucial. Preparations for the worst can improve problem-solving abilities.
Understanding the project strategy vision, bringing out the best out of your team, timely delivery of projects, being an effective communicator, solving problems, preparing, disclosing, bargaining and closing projects can go a long way in tuning your project management skills. Looking into administrative details of projects is also an area that can’t be missed out. Project management takes planning, leading, implementing and collaborating.
Any good project manager can become a great project manager any day. Taking a keen interest in your development, the team’s as well as individual development is an added asset. Keep your doors open for employees to put in their thoughts and worries that serve as barriers to meeting deliverables or taking up projects. Delegate tasks and sub-tasks to get work done in a simple and easy way. Finally, a great project manager works with the team and accomplishes their mission.