Managing projects for enterprise clients is a big responsibility. Such projects can be highly complex, as a result, enterprise clients typically select only the most skilled project managers to run their projects. If your goal is to manage projects for enterprise clients, it behooves you to develop skills that will help you stand out from the crowed. The following tips are designed to help you identify the skills necessary to wow enterprise clients.
Select the Right Talent
To wow enterprise clients with your ability to manage projects, the first thing you need to do is assemble a talented team. Learning to recognize who has the skills that are most suitable for any given project is a skill in itself – one that takes time to develop. However, there are some guidelines that can help you master the process, including:
- Look for members with different skills: Successfully implementing a complex project typically requires a variety of skillsets. Make sure your team has the depth of skills necessary to handle the totality of challenges you are likely to face in bringing the project to fruition.
- Look for individuals with complementary skills: Collaboration is a key function when working on enterprise projects. In addition to being talented, your team members also need to be adept at working with others to advance the project.
- Don’t be afraid to include people who you disagree with: It can be helpful to be exposed to opposing opinions when working on a project. Although you may disagree with such opinions, having team members who are willing to express their opinions even when they don’t correspond to yours can be valuable. While you might not completely abandon your own opinions as a result, hearing another point of view can enable you to enhance your approach to a project, making changes to improve project implementation that you likely would not have made otherwise.
- Don’t let your ego get in the way: Forming a team with top notch talent means that some team members are likely to be more skilled than you at some aspects of managing the project. If your ego keeps you from adding such personnel to the team it damages your ability to complete the project as efficiently as possible. Don’t let ego stop you from bringing in top talent – doing so is better for the project and for you in the long run.
No matter how brilliant your team members are, if a project isn’t organized properly the chance that it will get done in a manner that impresses enterprise clients is slim. Organizing a project typically relies on two things in addition to the human element: the process or methodology selected, and the project management software chosen to help implement that process.
As a project manager, if you can keep your team focused on sticking to the selected methodology while benefiting from the efficiency gained from employing project manager software, you improve your ability to deliver a project on time and under budget. This software can help identify redundant processes and areas where inefficiencies exist. Eliminating these hurdles to timely and within budget project completion is key to optimizing the management of a project. By making all relevant project data and files easily accessible to project participants, organizing the tasks that make up the project can be done much more efficiently.
Veteran project managers know that the ability to communicate effectively is one of the most valuable skills a project manager can have. Modern project management tools have increased the need for a project manager to be able to communicate proactively. By giving you the ability to reach out to multiple team members at once via collaboration functionality, whether via voice, video, or text, the ability to get your point across as clearly and concisely as possible becomes ever more important.
Active communication is more than simply checking in with team members and project stakeholders on a regular basis. It also encompasses asking for and taking into account their feedback. Doing so allows you to gain insights into project implementation from a variety of sources, providing you with as wide a range of informed opinions on the subject as possible.
Proactively Manage Risks
Managing risk involves predicting which issues may arise to threaten the project and taking steps to prevent them from knocking it off course if they occur. Proactively managing risk typically consists of asking the question “what if?” Doing so enables you to identify the most dangerous threats to a project and to prioritize taking steps to minimize the chance that they happen, and the damage they can do if they do materialize.
Three risks project managers must typically deal with include:
- Scope risk: If you don’t clearly enumerate project goals prior to project commencement, the risk of “scope creep” leading to a project’s objectives expanding until completing it on time and under budget becomes impossible. If a project’s objectives are ambiguous, other project stakeholders may be tempted to add “wish list” items to the project to-do list. Keep project objectives as tightly focused as possible, and funnel wish list items that arise during project implementation to future projects if at all possible.
- Budget risk: Whether a project’s scope increases during implementation or not, keeping a close eye on costs is essential to avoid going overbudget. A variety of factors can cause costs to vary from their budgeted amounts, so be sure to have backup plans in place to prevent such changes from blowing up the budget if they occur. For instance, if a supplier were to raise prices, you should identify alternate sources of supply for the same item.
- Time risk: While keeping costs within budget is important, timely completion of the project can be just as, if not more, important. If it costs more to get quicker results that will help you meet a project deadline, take into consideration which of the two factors is more important. To minimize the risk of exceeding the allotted time for achieving project milestones, your planning process should provide detailed analysis of alternate approaches to achieving these milestones if your initial plans go awry.
Nuvro is a robust online project management tool that helps you keep track of projects and wow enterprise clients with your project management skills. With Nuvro you can gain control and peace of mind over all of your projects, tasks, team members, workload and everything else important to your company. In addition to the project, task and collaboration features found in most PM tools, Nuvro also provides a company dashboard, a team dashboard, team member performance reviews, secure document management, an internal alternative to email and more. Nuvro is perfect for busy teams looking to accomplish more. Learn More…