5 Top Project Management Tips
Every good business owner knows that the key to success lies in effective project management. Unfortunately, not every business owner possesses the skills to lead a project and see it through to the end. Project management is a skill that is learned through both research and practice, and can make or break the success of yourself, your employees and your company. Here are five project management rules that every business owner or manager should know:
1. Construct a Plan
The first step to getting a project off of the ground is to create a sound plan. This should include an overview of the project, its objectives, and its scope. Part of your plan should concentrate on assumptions, risks, and organization, so that you have information to refer to as the project is being carried out.
2. Set Measurable Goals
It’s a simple fact that people are able to work better when they have goals to accomplish. By including measurable goals in your project management scheme, you will be better able to evaluate whether your project will be a success. As your project is being executed, how will you measure the productivity of your workforce? Will you look for increased sales, a rise in profits or an expansion of your customer base? By setting goals, or milestones, you will know whether your plan is working as you had hoped.
3. Assign Tasks
If you hope to increase productivity, part of your project management scheme must include the assignment of tasks. Remember that you are not solely responsible for the success of your business, but that each employee shares a part in that success. Assign tasks that play to your employees’ strengths. For instance, if you want to increase your online presence, look for an employee who is well-versed in social media instead of assigning the task to an employee who is technologically challenged.
4. Set Deadlines
When leading a project, each task that you assign should have a set deadline, and your employees should understand that you expect these deadlines to be met. Make sure that you keep the lines of communication open so that your employees can approach you with any questions or concerns. If you do this, you will find that your employees are much more likely to meet your deadlines successfully.
5. Avoid Chaos
Once you have constructed a plan, avoid the temptation to add to it or stray off course. If your project needs to be tweaked, do so after it is completed by coming up with a second phase to your original plan. If you frequently make changes to your project once a plan has been put into action, you will confuse your employees and actually see productivity decrease.
If you own a business and want to increase productivity, you need to learn how to be an exceptional project manager. By following the five tips above, you will not only be able to construct an effective project plan, but you will also be able to see your plan through to fruition.
Brenda Nelson blogs about business management strategies. If you are interested in a career in business, you might consider applying for a masters in strategic project management at New England College or Quinnipiac University.