Many of my readers are not PMs for large complex projects (e.g., designing an airplane, IT, or other big projects). Yet, regardless of the size of your project, project management can be difficult for many people. If you want to achieve better outcomes, embrace doing the right things to improve your project results!
Did you know projects fail at an astonishing rate of more than 50% of the time? Many team members lament they’ve been on many projects and never saw a project succeed! (Harvard Business Review)
When you think of the millions wasted, this is a huge problem.
So, what’s missing when projects fail?
Good project management. “90% of teams believe a great project manager is critical to the outcome of a project. “(Oracle)
But, first, to be a great PM, you need to improve your project management skills; otherwise, you will fail to achieve intended results.
9 Signs of a Bad Project Manager
Which of these traits sound familiar?
- Procrastination. Missed deadlines, not available to answer questions, allow conflicts to escalate and fail to fulfill promises.
- Micromanager. Doesn’t trust the team to do it right and nitpicks how tasks are completed instead of focusing on how well they are completed.
- Pollyanna. Overly-optimistic and believes in the power of positivity to the point of ineffectiveness.
- Overly Critical. Nothing is ever right or good enough….waiting for something to go wrong…it becomes a self-fulling prophecy.
- Know-It-All. When you think no one knows the answers better than you do, you will sabotage even the best teams.
- Egotistical. Concerned about looking bad, and focused solely on your own future promotions and bonuses with no consideration for your team.
- Fear of Conflict. Doesn’t have the skills and avoids involvement in tough conversations out of fear of being disliked.
- Allows the Creep Factor. Overlooks poor project design, unresolved kinks, and fails to manage difficult team members.
- Focuses Solely on Scoreboard. Only focuses on the end-results and fails to manage the process of how to achieve intended results.
9 Ways to Become a Results-Producing Project Manager
- Owns the Project and Intended Results. Timelines and milestones will be missed if you do not own the project and results. Factually address any “elephants” in the way to avoid having them trample over the team’s results.
- Improves Communication Processes. Communication is essential to good project management. Ensure everyone that needs to know has access to all updates.
- Shares the Credit. Acknowledge individual and group contributions to build team comradery.
- Manages Swoopers. When your boss swoops in to fix and motivate team members, it usually demotivates the team. Keep the boss apprised with a cc: on important items. Consult with the boss 1:1 if there is a major issue or setback.
- Develops Team Decision-making Process. Side decisions, 100% consensus or democratic voting will disengage the team. Build alignment through persuasive listening, which requires training. This process may take longer, but, will save you a lot of time and money in the long-run.
- Provides Resources. While many projects have kinks, pitfalls, and saboteurs, develop resilience and resourcefulness to work through them. Engage the team in true brainstorming to answer: Who, What, Where, Why, and When… before asking How?
- Selects the Right Team. There should be a mix of talent and skills to design the project and executive the plan. Non-core team members should only be included on a short-term basis.
- Honors Risk Management. To manage risks, use experts in finance, IT, legal, people, operations, sales, and marketing to get correct and usable information.
- Holds the Team Accountable. Manage the plan, budget, timeline, process, and outcomes, not individual personalities! To ensure team accountability, be open and flexible to for positive results.
When you embrace these 9 critical elements to become a results-producing PM, your projects will achieve intended results. During the process, you will also champion new benchmarks for future teams.
©Jeannette Seibly, 2019
Being a results-producer can be one of the most difficult challenges bosses face. Jeannette Seibly has been an award-winning champion for people for the past 26 years. She has guided bosses and teams to produce unprecedented results. Contact Jeannette today for straight talk with dynamic results.
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