Project Management Best Practices: Prioritizing and Planning

project-management-best-practices-prioritizing-and-planningIn order to run a successful business, you need effective project management in place to get the job done. Business projects can range from staffing and management to products and services. Setting up the building blocks of an establishment requires project management in so many ways. Although it may seem as though the only position that should be concerned with this subject matter are project managers, it is important that everyone know various methods and tools used to effectively carry out projects. Prioritizing and planning are the crucial practices that will get your project management team in the right place to make the business thrive. With these tips you are sure to stay on task and get projects completed more effectively.

When it’s time to plan a new project for the company, there are a plethora of components that need to be navigated before any progress can be made. First, you must determine how much time will be allotted for the given project. This will be determined by the nature of the project and how important it is. Next, a team needs to be put in place to execute the project. Who can be spared to work on the project for the given amount of time? Set a leader for the team and hold everyone accountable to ensure that things will get accomplished. Then you need to seek out all available resources for the task at hand. Are there sponsors needed to fund the project? Will volunteers need to be recruited to help the project come into fruition? Once you have identified the resources, you need to establish a budget for the project. Take a look at available funds for projects and set a realistic budget to see it through.

Once you have planned your project, it’s time to prioritize the various tasks needed to reach the finished product. Now that you have a plan in place, it is critical that everything be done according to its importance. Completing less important task in the beginning can easily be thrown off if more significant matters have to change. Your team can prioritize according to timelines, data, and forecasts. You can address these issues with the use of presentations, progress reports, and research. Each person in the team will be responsible for a certain part of the project. When each person has a task to complete, everyone can come together throughout the duration of the project to give updates and keep everything in perspective.

With these tips you are sure to stay on task and get projects completed more effectively.

Running a Creative Project Remotely

running-a-creative-project-remotelyIt used to be that creative projects went from brainstorming to beta testing and release in the most efficient way possible by putting all team members in the same place for the duration of the project. This model, however, might not be as efficient or desirable in today’s interconnect age.

Creative Projects Done Remotely

When you think about it, a creative project in which all team members are expected to be in the same city and on exactly the same schedule in increasingly unrealistic. You might be conducting a web design release in California and want to remain in close contact with a skilled back-end developer in Austin and a UX expert in Toronto.

When we say that the world is getting smaller, we don’t mean that the globe is literally getting smaller in size. This might as well be the case, though. The ability to submit proposals or draft revisions and get your changes seen and commented on by a whole creative team instantaneously in a watershed moment in tech history.

You can now brainstorm on video in real time with team members spread across the globe and use digital file sharing tools like DropSend to get the word out about recent changes. Conducting a creative project remotely makes more sense in light of the fact that changes can be made instantly; you can push back (or move forward) deadlines or replace absent or underperforming team members literally with the touch of a button.

All of these conveniences, however, aren’t without some drawbacks and cautions. To effectively run a creative project remotely, you’ll need a project manager that can keep ongoing communication with everyone on the creative team as well as a forum on which to post changes. If all of these things can be navigated, running a creative team remotely is a huge leap forward.

Tips for Making It Work

As long as each team member is dedicated to communication and collaboration, remote creative work promises a tremendous payoff. A project manager can get a team member working on any phase of the project to modify or even scrap altogether what s/he’s working on and get going on something else.

In addition, websites like Elance that bring together freelancers willing to work together, yet previously separated by geographic constraints, clearly show how cost-efficient and beneficial corralling together the most qualified freelancers in their respective fields can be. An attentive project manager can spot the best talent and bring those professionals into the fold.

Cost Savings and Efficiency

So, why is this so cost saving? Simply because the project manager doesn’t have to expense moving the whole creative team around to get to work; even if the project manager wouldn’t have been expected to pay the expense in the past, forcing a developer, programmer or designer to move in the past would have been a serious deterrent to lassoing the ideal team members for each project.

Another obvious advantage to a project manager getting the ball rolling remotely is that now there’s no need to have a brick-and-mortar location to house the whole creative project. Moreover, each team member – from back-end developer to e-commerce integrator – can work from the comfort of their own homes.

You can still foster a sense of teamwork and camaraderie by having the project manager engage each team member in suggestions and ways to wring the most out of each creative enterprise you undertake. The project manager in this brave new world needs to itemize, delegate and communicate each phase’s tasks when running a creative project remotely, and when this happens the payoff is huge.