How to be the project manager of your own life. When it comes to work projects, companies always try to hire the best employee to ensure success. For this reason, people feel a great weight on their shoulders when they lead projects of this type.
There is good news, though. It doesn’t matter if you have little, a lot, or zero experience. Following some practical tips can help you succeed. Plus, these tips can help you not only at work but also in a wide variety of situations in life.
Something that you should always take into account
Now it is your turn to quickly figure out the steps you must take to lead your team, and make your project a success. In addition, you have to combine your daily work with the direction of the new project. You cannot stop doing your daily tasks.
Do not panic, because in this post we’ll teach you the basic information you need to start your new challenge. So, you’ll be able to show your boss and your team that you are ready to lead your first project.
Why is learning to lead so important?
By becoming the leader of a project, you have many too many people and professionals in your team. You must direct them along the best path to achieve the previously established objectives.
Obviously, this task is not easy because each person has a way of doing things. For this reason, leaders are those who manage to channel each of the abilities and virtues of their subordinates.
Leaders must behave in an energetic, friendly, and empathetic way. But, at the same time, they must ask for the worker’s dedication to succeed in each of the projects.
6 tips you should follow when starting a project
1. Make sure you know and understand the background
There is a proverb that says a good start is half the work. The good news is that new projects are part of this rule.
Before starting to direct your project, you have to know two aspects:
- The project’s origin and reason to be.
- The environment where the project will take place.
Projects do not operate in a vacuum. You must familiarize yourself with the culture and processes of its organization.
Also, know the legal regulations that affect it, the standards of its sector, etc.
If you do not have this information, you should have a personal interview with the project sponsor, to know with certainty the situation that is to be improved. You must communicate this information to your team.
2. Get staff to start working, how to be the project manager of your own life
Think about who you would like on your team. If you work in a large organization, you may have to negotiate with some managers and directors.
Once you have your team, get to know everyone. In case you do not know each other, it will be an excellent opportunity to meet. Also, to convey the same information to everyone about the objectives of the project.
Each member of your team must know their role and responsibility within the project. Let everyone be clear about who does what.
To assign the different roles and responsibilities, you can use a RACI Matrix. It is a tool that allows you to make an adequate distribution of tasks among the components of your team.
3. Identify Stakeholders, how to be the project manager of your own life
Stakeholders are individuals, groups of people, and even organizations, who can positively or negatively influence a project, or be affected by its outcome. They can be internal or external to the project, such as clients, suppliers, team members, functional leaders, or members of a community.
You must identify them and try to know their interests and influence. This identification must happen throughout the process, but especially in the start-up phase. Your team should also participate in this activity.
This process allows you to know with whom and how you should communicate throughout the project.
4. Set measurable goals and milestones
You can set the project objectives and prioritize them based on their importance once you know the needs of your stakeholders. A good practice is to set the main goal and a series of smaller goals.
In order to define these objectives, think about the “deliverables” of your project, or the final result that you expect it to produce, whether it is a product or a service.
Once identified, you can start estimating delivery dates for each deliverable. This initial estimate will help you to size your project, and in a later phase, to monitor and control it.
At this point, do not worry about the accuracy of your initial estimate. You will detail it with greater precision in the planning stage, when you begin to prepare the management plan with your team.
5. Define the scope of your project
Identifying the scope of a project is nothing more than defining what is included and what is not included in it. It seems simple, but it has its complexity.
In this initial phase, you should define a generic scope, with little level of detail. It is about determining three aspects:
- If your project has a chance of success, before your organization commits resources.
- Whether it can be delivered by the estimated completion date.
- If it can be completed within budget.
Defining the scope of the project clearly and concisely will help to refine time and cost estimates, and to manage changes as they occur.
While project changes are unavoidable, you need to detect when your project begins to look like something completely different from what was initially described.
6. Create a Project Minutes, how to be the project manager of your own life
I’m going to give you two reasons why I think you should always make a charter:
The Charter, or Project Charter, is the birth certificate of your project. It is a document that formalizes the beginning, appointing a director and clarifying his level of authority. It involves explicit recognition and direct support for the project and its leader.
Furthermore, it is a simple way of communicating the existence of the project to all interested parties, which is not a minor issue. One of the most frustrating things that can happen to you when you start working on a project is to ask an interested party to participate, and they do not know what you are talking about.
Some recommendations to create the articles of incorporation
There is no standardized document of minutes, you must decide the format and the level of detail you want to reach.
Try not to overextend yourself. One or two pages may be enough. On some occasions, an email will suffice.
Before writing it, think that it should be broad and generic enough so that you do not need changes as the project progresses.
Do not include very specific details, for that there is a project management plan. Once it is written and signed by the sponsor, distribute it to all interested parties.
There are surely more things you can do to get your project off to a good start. With these tips, people can find the best way to turn their projects into a success.