Did you ever ask yourself why your projects never work out the way you plan? No matter how well you think you’re prepared, something always seems to go wrong. Trust me, we’ve all been there. But that doesn’t mean your team is unprepared or that you should put more effort in the project planning. It just means that you’re missing out on a few secrets about projects.
1. Good communication
The first one sounds obvious, but believe me it isn’t. A lot of businesses and teams are still struggling with their internal communication, so some of you might want to hear this.
Project information should flow among the teams, because nobody likes bad surprises. Nevertheless, a lot of team members feel pressured, so they prefer covering things up then admitting it was their “mistake”. That’s bad communication and it can cost the whole project. So what you do?
Make sure your teams are well-informed and work in a friendly as well as collaborative environment. Communicate to your team that it is human to make mistakes. They should feel free to alert the top management, when they see a problem. This way, someone can fix the issue right away. Often times, the top management has resources other team members don’t. So make sure both horizontal and vertical communication in the company are good. Consequently, your project will run smoothly.
2. 80/20 rule
There are a lot of perfectionists out there. But perfect doesn’t mean best outcome nor most efficient. Therefore, you may want to consider settling for less than perfect. Keep the 80/20 rule in mind, when executing a project. Here is a quick reminder of what the rule says: we put more effort into doing 20% of our project than to do 80% of it.
Therefore, focus on delivering the 80% first and ignore the remaining 20%. Otherwise, your teams will feel like they haven’t achieved anything. They will only think about the 20% they did not reach and forget about their success. That’s not the vibe you would want at the workplace. You want your team members to stay motivated and excited about upcoming projects. So cherish those 80%.
3. Let Project Managers do their job
When we hire new project managers, we often tend to tell them what to do right away. We think that these are just instructions to help them integrate, but what we are actually doing is giving them suggestions on how they should do their job.
But what if we let project managers be creative and let them try out their own strategies in their teams. They might bring new ideas we can all learn and profit from. And that’s exactly what you would want in your company: employees that bring new perspectives and strategies. You may want to keep this in mind, when you’re hiring your next project manager.
We all know that we should plan our projects before executing them. We should define our budget, the workload and come up with a reasonable timetable. Seems easy, right? So what’s the secret about it? The secret is to take your time. Check if your plan is right and schedule meetings to discuss and brainstorm whether or not your project is feasible. Also, consider splitting big projects into smaller pieces so that you can allocate the tasks better.
Even if you did everything that was mentioned above, the probability that something will still go wrong is very high. Mistakes are simply unpredictable and the best way to solve them is to expect them. Again, let your team know that mistakes are human and that it’s important to communicate them, so that you can solve them together.
5. Project Tracking
Time tracking will help you keep up with your projects on every step of the way. Once you start measuring your performance, you will be able to identify mistakes and problem areas in the project. This will help you optimise your work and learn how to allocate your resources for future projects. This long-term learning process will make your team more efficient.
Here is an additional benefit of project time tracking: knowing how well you are performing motivates your team players. And every workplace wants an environment with motivated and excited people, right? There are many project management tools, like nTask helping teams increase their efficiency by offering an easy-to-use platform so that they can collaborate and manage their project resources better.
Here is the last secret you need to know: sometimes cancelling a project is better than trying to save it. Of course, nobody wants to cancel a project, because it means accepting that we failed. So even if we make mistake after mistake and the project is already way over budget and our schedule, we will don’t want to cancel, because we ask ourselves: “What will people say?”.
But think about it. Trying to save a failing project takes a lot of resources, that are already scarce. And it gets worse. In most cases, the project ends up being an even bigger burden, the longer we try to save it. Therefore, sometimes we just have to let go and accept the fact that the project couldn’t get done. And that’s ok.
Are you ready to use those secrets in your team? Check out our easy-to-use project time tracking software, that will help you keep up with your projects.
TimeTrack is an efficient Time Tracker Software for Businesses and Individuals. Never worry about project management again.
Set it up in a few minutes and keep up with your performances. Know your strengths and acknowledge your weaknesses. You can only improve, if you know what your mistakes are. Are you ready to find out? Learn more about TimeTrack.