Project management is an essential element in running a successful business today. The focus of managing a project encompasses such aspects as prioritizing, tracking performance and providing adaptability to changes in the original planning model. The difference between a successful management of a project is often to be found in the attributes exhibited by the manager.
A good project manager is capable of setting clearly defined and achievable goals. A factor related to this skill involves getting everyone on the team to agree to the goals.
The talent to prioritize the various aspects of a project is a vitally important skill. Prioritizing means considering the resources that will be needed to achieve success and identifying which members of the project team are best equipped to meet specific parts of the process. Prioritizing skills also encompass scheduling responsibilities.
A good project manager knows the strengths and weaknesses of all the resources at his disposal. Assessment includes not only recognizing the working skills of employees, but also being intuitive enough to figure in how their personality will affect those skills.
Compromise can be a dirty word, but knowing when to stick to your guns and when to sacrifice to make allowances is actually something that distinguishes a good manager from a mediocre manager. The central driving force of all decisions to compromise is to make sure that nothing is done to threaten the objective of the project.
Compromise can often be achieved without any significant conflict, but when conflict arises for any reason, the project manager needs to step in and resolve the issue in a way that benefits the possibility of achieving success for the project. Conflict resolution is dependent on having as many facts relating to the subject of disagreement as possible.
Many projects result in a wealth of information and data that must be appropriately organized, assessed and exploited. Project managers who regularly succeed learn how to make information accessible to all team members and make a habit of ensuring that all data is being updated and backed up.
Lack of communication can easily result in problems on the way to achieving project success. Part of the manager’s job is to ensure a chain of command for relaying information that doesn’t wind up being sandbagged by its own bureaucracy. An easily overlooked aspect of being a good communicator is understanding who needs what specific information and making sure that communications process facilitates smooth and accurate delivery of that information.
Especially when dealing with long term projects, you need to become efficient at monitoring the performances of each individual as well as the progress of the overall project. It may be unpleasant, but this kind of tracking usually means progress reports, meetings and double checking the status on external suppliers.
Adapting to Change
Changes to the project at all levels of development can occur right up to the last minute. A manager who can accept even the most unlikely and difficult changes and efficiently institute them is the manager most likely to get promoted.
One significant attribute to good project management must wait until all other attributes have been demonstrated. One the project has been successfully completed, the manager needs to evaluate all aspects of the process and compile a report that lists the strengths and weaknesses of all elements involved in the project.