New in Project Management? 6 Tips to Act Like a Pro!
Yuliya Skorobogatova 25 October 2016
Project management has become one of the most essential organizational processes in modern business. In a way, business organizations have become more sophisticated and they pay attention to a lot of important things that were considered irrelevant in the past. Any serious businessman knows that a business that has more than a dozen employees needs to have managers as well, who will take care of that group of people and make sure that they cooperate and work together smoothly.
If you are new to project management and want to learn all the essentials quickly, then stick around for a while. These tips will not help you become a pro, but they can point you in the right direction, and if you work on improving them, the team you manage will become highly efficient, and they’ll be happy about it as well.
Here are the things you need to remember if you want to be perceived as a professional project manager.
1. Work on your social skills
The nature of your job is to work with people, and this is why it is essential to have good social skills. You will need to be able to interact with colleagues and establish important professional connections, if you are going to have an impact on how they work. You’ll need to be full of understanding, and this can sometimes be difficult, as everyone is different.
Get to know them, see what kind of personalities you have within your team, and act with that in mind. Assigning roles, giving urgent tasks or appointing leaders will fall into place naturally.
2. Ask questions
As a leader, you cannot let things slide. No matter if someone has made a mistake or has done something well, you need to learn what their reasoning behind it was. As an inexperienced project manager, this might be difficult and you can find yourself feeling like you don’t want to step on anyone’s toes. But you must get over this and keep an eye on all the work that’s being done, if you are going to manage a project successfully.
Additionally, you can also learn from them. When you know how your team thinks, you will get to know them better and, like I’ve mentioned before, this will lead to an improved sense of collaboration regarding any task you do as a group.
3. See the big picture, but pay attention to small details
When working on a project and leading people towards finishing it successfully and professionally, it is important to always keep the end goal in mind. However, you cannot just think about this alone. If you want to finish a project with great results, you will have to ensure that all smaller tasks are tackled each day, because in the end, when you combine all of the smaller tasks and milestones together, you get the end result you wanted – a finished project. Make sure that everything is going according to plan and that there are no skipped steps, as these can backfire in your face and cause a catastrophe.
4. Set realistic expectations
You are the voice of reason and you must always try to honor your role. No matter how much opportunity you see in a certain business incentive, undertaking or project, you should not accept tasks or pursue things that are out of your team’s reach.
The same rule applies when looking at your job from a micro point of view. For example, you should never force your employees to do something they are not capable of yet. By putting so much pressure on them, you will get even worse results and you whole team will suffer.
Encourage your team members to improve and work with them on this through each project, but don’t expect immediate progress. This is a process and it takes time.
5. Be a true leader
If you want to be a good leader, you must first set an example. If you want your role to be meaningful, avoid bossing people around by telling them what to do without ever taking their opinion into account. As a leader, you need to work hard and improve yourself constantly. With your dedication and hard work, you can inspire other employees to do the same.
Leaders need to know more than everybody else. They have to be open to criticism and have no fear of criticizing others. Set yourself as equal while contributing to your whole team. Always make sure to praise hard work but also point out when someone made a mistake, so that they can take note and improve themselves.
6. Know your project management solution
Modern businesses require exceptional project management and it is impossible to bring this to perfection without project management software. A project management tool can help improve collaboration, give you a better overview of projects, make all the information available to everyone, help assign roles more transparently, and facilitate project management in many other ways.
In order to utilize on all of these benefits, you must also learn how to use your project management solution and make sure that everything is on track. More and more business processes are getting digitalized and this applies to project management. No manager can expect to excel at his field without having the necessary computer and software skills.
These are the 6 essentials you must always have in mind, if you want to become a good project manager. Of course, you need to work on them and improve yourself. Each new task brings new challenges your way, and you need to catch the waves and swim like a pro.
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