Any project manager worth their salary has a variety of tasks to complete every day, from budgeting to planning, training to presenting, and balancing all this out is all part and parcel of the job. Alongside all this, you are the person your team looks to for guidance and direction, so no matter how busy you are, it is crucial you find the time to fit in these five key things each and every day.
- Keeping your promises
You need to remain credible in the eyes of your stakeholders and team members alike, so if you’ve said you’re going to do something, get it done. No matter how big or small the action is, if you’ve set a deadline or agreed to complete something, then make sure it takes priority. Failing to be reliable or trustworthy is the quickest way to gain a reputation as a bit of a wet blanket, so strive to keep the promises you make, and only make the promises you know you can keep.
- Being supportive to your team
The people who work with you in your team are the nuts and bolts of your organisation. Without them you won’t get a single project completed, so always make sure you are giving them the respect and support they desire. Play to their strengths and allow for individuality, and always ‘have their back’ when things go wrong. Even if they have made a mistake, the buck stops with the project manager, so support them in putting things right no matter what.
- Making sure you delegate
As a project manager, you shouldn’t be trying to do everything yourself. To offer the maximum value from your position, you need to learn how to delegate tasks. Your role is to concentrate on the bigger picture and to take the strategic lead on your projects, so as much as you think you could do the job better or quicker, learn to recognise which parts of your administration and other duties can be passed on to members of your team.
- Taking a proactive stance
You should always have an eye on the horizon, and be preparing for the future and what’s coming up next. Being absorbed in the moment can lead to a reactive project management situation, which is no good for anyone’s confidence or stress levels. Don’t wait for things to happen before you do something about it, instead take steps to make the things you want to happen, happen for you now.
- Staying cool, calm and collected
Project management is a highly charged and stressful environment, particularly when a deadline is looming. Whatever you do, stay calm and collected, as panic at the head of a project team will quickly filter down the ranks and cause mass problems. Keep a balanced perspective and avoid knee jerk reactions to problems or conflicts to maintain a good balance within the team.,/li>
Ask yourself every day if you are still doing these five things, because without this, you are sure to encounter problems with your project. In addition to these critical elements, make sure you make time to eat, and to sleep, as many project managers seem to forget these basic necessities!