Taking on projects and completing them in a timely manner may seem like a simple task, but it is anything but. If your business is relatively untested, developing an adequate project management strategy can be a bit difficult. Rather than neglecting to address project management failures, your main goal should be addressing them head-on.
Did you realize that nearly 40 percent of all project management failures are caused by a lack of defined goals? Before delegating various tasks to your team, you need to give them an idea of what the overall mission of a particular project is. By doing this, you can keep everyone on track and moving towards the same goal.
The following are some of the things you need to know about the five phases of project management.
1. Initiating a New Project Can be Difficult
The beginning stages of a new project can be both exciting and a bit overwhelming. If you and your team are new to the world of project management, you need to take the time to plan out every detail to ensure no mistakes are made.
The first thing you need to figure out before taking on a particular project is whether or not it is financially feasible or profitable. If your business consistently loses money due to poorly planned or executed projects, it is only a matter of time before you have to close the doors.
Instead of rushing into a particular project, take the time to do a bit of market research. With the results from this research, you can figure out if a particular project is a right fit for your company. After this decision is made, you can begin to set the goals and expectations for a particular project.
2. The Project Planning Phase
One of the key components to successful project completion is adequate planning. Starting a new project with a number of “what ifs” can cause lots of confusion and may lead to various tasks going undone.
You need to start this planning project by setting specific goals. Next, create a way to measure the results garnered throughout the progression of a particular project. You will also need to identify which goals are the most important and how to attain the results you are after.
Some business owners make the mistake of getting a bit overzealous with the goals they have set. Ideally, you want to set goals that are within your team’s grasp. Setting a series of unrealistic goals will not only lead to failure, but it can also bring down team morale as well.
3. Getting Deliverables Developed and Completed
As any experienced business owner will tell you, the most important part of a project is the phase where deliverables are created and completed. During this phase of your project, you will need to work on being hands-on. Getting too far removed from this process can lead to lots of mistakes occurring.
Performing routine meetings and getting status reports from your team is essential during this phase of the project. Getting regular status reports can help you see where problems are occurring. The faster you can detect these issues, the easier you will find it to fix them before any real damage is done.
4. Monitoring Project Performance
Having a team of knowledgeable and hard-working employees is the only way to take your business from a startup to a success story. You need to realize that even the best employees will need guidance and feedback from time to time. Putting the right project managers in place will help you get a big picture view of how well your team is performing on a particular assignment.
Often times, using tools like those for log monitoring will help you detect errors and fix them in a timely manner. For years, software development organizations have used logging programs and application performance management to make gathering information easier. Find out more about this feature by visiting this page.
You will also need to look at a few key performance indicators when trying to assess how well your team is performing. Looking at the overall quality of the work being turned in can be extremely helpful. If you get the feeling team members are rushing through the completion of deliverables to meet a deadline, you need to nip this problem in the bud immediately.
5. Properly Closing a Project
Completing a project can be a very thrilling experience. For most business owners, the completion of a project means that all of the goals and plans developed have been executed properly. Once a project is closed out, take a look back at which team members went above and beyond.
Awarding these employees with either a pat on the back or a bonus is a good idea. By doing this, you are showing your team you recognize how hard they work and that you are appreciative. Failing to show this type of appreciation can lead to morale issues and other employee engagement issues.
Project Management is a Team Effort
Trying to handle the development and completion of a project is a recipe for disaster. Making project management a team effort will increase productivity levels and decrease the amount of stress you have to deal with.