At one time or another we will all be responsible for managing a project at work. Often we get these assignments without really having any authority over the people on the team. This means to succeed we need to create a collaborative, welcoming and mutually beneficial team environment. It’s not as hard as it might seem.
Here are my top 10 tips for creating success:
- Solicit Input: Actively engage each team member in brainstorming ideas and options. Participation is a must not an option.
- Hold People Accountable: Require updates and hold people to due dates for tasks. Address performance issues quickly and professionally.
- Communicate Often: Provide progress reports to stakeholders often. Share status within the team. Let people know what’s happening and why it’s happening.
- Make Decisions: As team leader the final say is yours, so make the decisions. Even if your choice is not popular you must decide and act. Seek to get commitment, consensus is not required.
- Believe in Success: Show you believe the team will succeed to EVERYONE!
- Give Credit: Share the credit with the team, place them above your personal recognition.
- Celebrate Milestones: Take a moment or two to celebrate reaching key milestones. Long projects need the small wins to maintain momentum and enthusiasm.
- Track Progress Closely: Know the status of the project at all times. Regular updates will keep people moving forward.
- Lend a Hand: Help destroy obstacles, pitch in if someone is overwhelmed. Have your team’s backs.
- Learn to Say No: If the project scope is creeping up as team leader you must say NO. If someone is attempting to dodge work or bail on an assignment you must say No and hold them to it.
Project management can seem really difficult and it can be, however, mastering these 10 items will help you set the stage for a successful project. Keep your team engaged, support them, hold them accountable and celebrate the progress you are making and you improve the odds of success. If you can get your team to work well together it will be much easier to navigate the rough patches that will happen. They will know you are there for them and they will be there for you. Success is sure to follow at that point.