Does any of the common phrases quoted below strike your mind often?
- Had I known before, I would have done it differently.
- I wasn’t aware that we had a template for that!
On a general note, different people in a team come with different ideologies and philosophies. Being a Project Manager, you need to ensure that all the requisite information should get into the heads of the respective project team members who need to know it at the right time. Once they are well aware of what is expected out of them, it becomes easier to convey the project goals and it becomes their sole responsibility to take care of their respective job roles and contribute effectively towards the overall productivity of the project.
Here are 5 tips that a Project Manager and his team should follow to enhance the project’s productivity thereby expediting its final delivery. Let’s explore some of the possibilities to accelerate your project development and overall growth and productivity:
Maintain Documents Warehouse
Every project team member should try to maintain repositories of all your written documents in one searchable place. You can use the available data for passing on the knowledge among your team members. This knowledge base can be saved in any form - a wiki page or a shared network drive or a collaboration tool which can be used internally for knowledge transfer. You can store it on a CD or a pen drive in the form of images and videos which should be strictly used for official purposes only.
As a Project Manager, you should be in a better position to judge team members who have in-depth knowledge about the project-related activities. Try to pair up the knowledgeable bunch with team-mates who need some process training. Literally, a training may be on anything, be it from building a software feature or add-on to using macro-based spreadsheets or detailed understanding of the internal processes, etc. The core idea is to drive and spread knowledge among the team members and create a multi-disciplinary team which can work in coordination with each other in the long run and delivers the project on or before the assigned deadlines.
Cross-training among the team members is an effective measure to keep the project on track. Just in case, you feel the need that any of your team members need to specialize on a certain set of work which can be achieved only through some special training, you can nominate them for the Project Management Certification program so that they can get some key inputs of how to go about in accomplishing the project goals and perform their respective duties efficiently and more effectively.
Conduct Team Meetings
Regular team meetings provide a wonderful opportunity for the team members to share knowledge. As a Project Manager, you can make a team huddle as a part of the regular agenda and request the team members to share any latest update during the huddle. It becomes an easy platform to share their respective expertise and knowledge. In due course, this habit turns into a regular practice and benefits one and all. Generally speaking, a project team can discuss topics related to the project in the team meeting and talk about what they know and highlight those areas which they wish to explore.
By doing this, the team members can pass on interesting facts about the project and the challenges they face while performing their work and recommend solutions to fight back various project issues effectively.
Grasp Lessons from Meetings
Being a Project Manager, you need to ensure that you and your team grasps the lessons learned during the team meetings. This drives like a vehicle for a good start and stacking valuable information wherever necessary. A team huddle on a regular basis offers an immense scope to the team members to exchange ideas and each of them can benefit from going over what worked and what didn’t.
Making a meeting as a useful exercise can go a long way in refreshing the project requirements and understanding what needs to be improved. As a matter of fact, you can utilize your mind mapping tools and document the output in a simple visual way. For instance, you can jot down key points and the lessons learned and distribute as a pamphlet among your team members who can paste it on their respective workstations so that they can use it as a reminder to keep the project on track and this also acts as a key lesson for future or upcoming projects.
Mentoring your Team Members
Mentoring is a key element to keep the project on track. Time-to-time discussions with your team members can help in keeping the project scope in place. Although mentoring is quite different from training. It is a more informal approach to conveying some valuable information and knowledge about the various project requirements. As a Project Manager, you should allocate an experienced person to mentor the newbies or lesser experienced team members with the intent to pass on relevant project know-how. The information may include of process knowledge, how the company functions or some specific industry area etc.
Literally speaking, mentoring is considered a personal experience which works best when there is a two-way working relationship between the mentor and mentee, i.e., both need to interact with each other and discuss complex issues and try to connect and understand each other’s viewpoints.
On a final note, once you employ all of these strategies you can be guaranteed of your project’s productivity is on the right track. Genuinely speaking, there is no one-size-fits-all approach in terms of productivity. A project can work effectively only when there is proper task management by the Project Manager and that your team members are well aware of their respective contribution towards the final output and remove any distractions in their minds. This would ensure that each team member is working in collaboration with each other for the accomplishment of the project goals and boosting the project’s overall productivity.
As a Project Manager, what has been your most effective technique to expedite the productivity of your project? Feel free to share your ideas or thoughts in the comments section below.