The job role, “Project Manager” has a dual meaning. Not only is there the obvious definition of ‘someone who plans, procures and executes a project’ but in the vast majority of cases, it also denotes someone who manages a project team. Managing a team, who may be a disparate group of employees spread far and wide, can pose a special challenge.
Here are a few short tips to help ensure you’re getting the most from your team:
1. Set clear goals
Setting clear goals and motivating the team to work better together to complete them is key to getting things done. Nothing causes frustration faster on a project than bringing motivated people who want to get things done together, and then giving them no direction for how best to work alongside one another.
That’s why at the outset of a project, it’s essential to clearly communicating roles and responsibilities. Outline the overall tasks that need doing in order to reach the project goals. Whether you like it or not, it’s your team who are the actual experts and they all have their specific roles and skill sets. The last thing a project manager wants is multiple people working on the same task or overlooking some significant tasks. ‘Coordination + communication = completion’ is a project manager’s mantra.
2. Be transparent
One way to ensure effective communication is to foster a transparent climate within your team. Letting your team and stakeholders know what the plan is and how everything is coming along means they’ll feel more involved and invested in the outcome.
You can do this by making information accessible and visual. It’s why Kanban boards are becoming so popular. They provide a tangible way to visualize your tasks as cards, and arrange them in columns depending on what’s in in progress, finished or yet to be started. Kanban boards are great for teams and project managers to set out who should be working on what while at the same time painting a clear and comprehensive picture of what stage each section of a project is at.
3. Meet regularly
That’s not to say the project won’t go astray! If you’re a manager who is working in the same location as a lot of your team members, it always helps to gather your team on a daily basis and host a quick meeting. Keep it quick and simple – no longer than 10 minutes. You just want everyone to talk about the tasks they did yesterday, what they’re working on today and if there’s anything they need help with. It helps you catch any issues early so your team isn’t wasting time and you can keep the project on track.
Team management is one of the key roles of the project manager. To find out more about what is involved, download our free eBook Project Manager’s Guide to Getting Things Done.