Project managers are always under constant pressure to deliver the assigned tasks in the given budget and timeline. Here, one has to have a handsome experience, relevant expertise, and hands on experience on up-to-date supportive applications. The following 4 trendy suggestions are surely going to help you, if you take them practically.
#1: Adopt the Art of Disciplined Prioritization:
You know, there are too many management lessons that are applicable in project management arena; however, if you ask me the most important point, it’s disciplined prioritization. A project consists of too many elements and tasks to perform; therefore, it’s very important to prioritize things as per their respective vitality and nature. Stephen R Covey has rightly put “Put first things first” in his famous book “7 Habits of Highly Successful People”. By disciplined organization, one is able to make a time-table and can meet the deadline effectively.
#2: Learn to Manage Your IT Equipment:
This might seem a bit surprising but it has been found that on average, a person spends 137 hours a year, in healing the malfunctioning equipment around. Companies invest over $160 billion in maintenance of their IT systems. These two stats highlight a serious bottleneck in modern management, which relies on machines. Sometimes, your web browsers’ shockwave flash keeps crashing, while on the other side, your system turns slow. Therefore, learn to handle such bottlenecks. It is strongly recommended to obtain necessary IT training. If properly utilized a standard application like Microsoft Excel can help you manage projects efficiently but if you can’t handle, even SAP or ERP might not deliver the results.
#3: Utilize Cloud or Data Service Applications:
DropBox and Sky Drive are quite popular these days. The reason behind their popularity is simple; “ease of access to your data”. A project manager might have to communicate with different departments, teams and had to provide some important data or files. If you keep reliance on emails or may be direct flash drives, it won’t work in the modern office environment. Therefore, adopt cloud systems, which is future of data management. If you cannot go for paid services like Egnyte, download Google drive or go for DropBox. This will help teams gather important data and information on the right time. It will save time, and improve efficiency alongside internal communication. Emails or Skype might work, but for communicating messages, not official documents.
#4: Set Benchmarks and Milestones:
Performance management is a very broad area, whereas we wrongly assume it to be part of only human resource manager’s domain. As a project manager, one has to be a good performance manager as well. In this regards, I personally prefer the following approach “Delegate the responsibility, set benchmarks and create milestones”. As a manager, your job is to coordinate the activities and improve the deficiencies in the team’s performance. Therefore, delegate tasks/responsibilities and create milestones. After a particular milestone has been achieved, audit the performance against a predefined benchmark. This will not only improve systematic efficiency but also save the lost hours in meetings and unnecessary long discussions.
I hope above give suggestions will help you improve your project management process and help in achievement of your goals. You can reach me out on Twitter @tahir_akbar2 and follow my posts on Quora here.