Like so many, we have made our New Year’s Resolutions and started processing tasks and available hours in which to accomplish them. Happy New Year!It is this time of planning and house cleaning that we offer five quick thoughts on getting yourself — and your projects — ready for 2008: your Project Management Resolutions.
1. Shed those extra hours
Sit down with sponsors for each of your projects and remind them of each of your project issues and opportunities. Resources are likely just as constrained in 2008 as they were in 2007. Ensure your plan for completing your project work this year with such limited resources is front and center, visible to your teams, sponsors, and functional managers. If you are asked to devise a plan to do more with fewer resources, make sure you are equipped with your Project Change worksheet to frame your discussion around concrete implications to your projects’ Cost, Schedule, and Performance components and team members.
2. Go back to school
It is never too late to learn something new, particularly in project management. Updates to the PMP curriculum, along with the new Program Management Professional certifications are just the beginning. Consider taking a course on Risk Management, Managing Project Management or Portfolio Management and ensure you have the latest skills to deliver results effectively.
3. “Keep track of track of your progress…”
Dr. Alan Marlatt, director of University of Washington’s Addictive Behaviors Research Center, says “the more monitoring you do, and feedback you get, the better you will do” when setting New Year’s Resolutions. The same applies to your projects. Have you performed a reporting feedback audit lately? Do you really have the systems in place to know where your team is, and how efficiently they are performing, when you need to know it? Use this time to get your reporting system in shape.
4. Don’t be a dictator
Control is in our nature. But benevolent project managers accomplish more faster than angry task masters. Remember: the project must win. Project success is more important than ego, relationship issues, and politics. Apply a delicate touch to project problems and you will stand a better chance of keeping your goal in sight.
5. Be persistent
Change is hard. Do not let yourself be daunted by early failures when you try something new. Like losing those last few pounds, or quitting a bad habit, managing your own expectations will go a long way in a successful outcome. Remember, a good portion of your job as project manager is transferring that enthusiasm to your team. The key to making change stick with your teams comes in sharing your confidence that you will succeed, that you will deliver your projects on time, under budget, and within scope.
From everyone on the Cadence team, we wish you the greatest project success in 2008!