With the abundant availability of project management courses and certifications on the web, anybody can become a project manager, on paper.
While there is no denying that the skills taught in such courses hold significant importance in the success of professional project managers, the other significant part of their success depends on developing healthy management habits.
The good news is, just like taking an online project management course and learning relevant skills, it is possible for anyone to learn the habits that differentiate effective project managers from the rest.
Let’s look at the most common habits of effective project managers, that even you can develop:
The Ability To Predict Future Needs And Making Informed Commitments
Don’t worry, we’re not trying to imply that effective project managers have the ability to look into the future. However, modern project managers have access to tools like project management software and time tracking tools that allow them to analyse and study patterns.
Studying historical patterns is a great way to learn from past mistakes and avoid them in future projects.
For instance, if you analyse the attendance data of your team and notice that they are being forced to lodge overtime in order to meet short-term project milestones, you can ramp up hiring and make sure no deadlines are missed in the future.
If you aren’t already using these tools, it is high time you look into one. You can even start with an open source project management software and scale up as and when your business goals demand.
Stress On Well Defined Objectives And Budget Restrictions
Effective managers have the habit of talking in absolute terms. They demand numbers, and are used to strict but well defined deadlines and objectives.
Having well defined objectives will allow you to ensure your project progress stays on track. That’s why, it is a great idea to break long term goals into smaller goals and if needed, to break down the small goals into even smaller objectives.
Staying on top of these short-term goals allows project managers to keep project progress on track, regardless of the duration of the project.
Communicating Effectively And Clearly
Smooth and effective communication is the bloodline of effective project management. Having strong communication skills is thus an absolute necessity for project managers.
Besides being able to effectively get your message across, you must also ensure your teammates are able to do the same. To do this, make sure you have well-defined communication channels for casual and formal communications. It is also a great idea to use a tool like Slack to create separate discussion rooms for different aspects and tasks of the project.
With access to clear communication channels, you and your team will be able to minimise miscommunication and ensure no communication goes amiss.
Investing in good communication tools will also allow you to conduct smoother client interactions like meetings, reviews, and product demonstrations.
Analysing Reports And Staying On Top Of Project Progress
Having access to all these tools like project management software, time tracking tools, and state-of-the-art communication tools has a hidden advantage- the access to data.
By developing the habit of regularly analysing data, you will be able to make better informed decisions and in turn, realistic predictions and commitments to your clients. It will also enable you to bring more efficiency in your delegation decisions, and allow you to manage your budget and resources better.
These were the four of many habits that are common among effective project managers.
Which habits let you bring more effectiveness in your project management endeavours? Share with us in the comment section below.