Applying a project management structure to an ambiguous set of requirements usually starts with a comprehensive stakeholder analysis. Communicating with these individuals early in the process ensures that they fully comprehend your approach and support the activities necessary to be successful. You’ll also be better able to anticipate reactions and any objections later on if you understand the forces impacting your organization’s overall strategy.
John Gizowski of La Grange, Illinois, is a project manager with a proven track record of getting projects across the finish line on time and under budget. Below, Mr. Gizowski shares how this strategy enables you to shape the project plan by gaining support from influential leaders in your organization first. To begin, identify all the people who have a vested interest in the outcome of your project.
Then, rank these stakeholders regarding influence, power, and capability. Your success as a project manager depends on your accurate assessment of who needs to be satisfied, managed jointly, kept informed or just monitored. Understanding and applying project management competencies involve managing interpersonal relationships and handling expectations. Ask open-ended questions to figure out what motivates their interests.
Cope with chaos by creating a matrix that describes the roles and responsibilities of all team members and stakeholders. This activity ensures you can accurately define project sponsorship. It also allows you to create reward and recognition mechanisms for everyone in the hierarchy. Additionally, compiling a statement of work, work breakdown structure, and other project specifications help you identify the necessary activities, task duration, and dependencies to complete the project work. This strategy allows you to set up flexible schedules, as well.
In summary, when you estimate costs and assign appropriate resources at the beginning of a project, you can then execute according to plan. With quality planning and control methods, you can ensure a successful outcome. Understanding, qualifying and quantifying the potential risks helps you avert any looming disasters and take advantage of fortuitous opportunities. When you apply a structure to your chaotic environment, team members are less likely to get distracted by unnecessary conflict and confusion. Effective communication allows your team to give each other feedback and get work done promptly.
About: As an engineer and project manager, John Gizowski of La Grange, IL has earned recognition and respect among his colleagues for his hands-on approach to meeting or exceeding goals, timely implementation, and return on investment in all of his projects. Beyond the office, he serves as an academic advisor to his alma mater and is a member of the Society of Automotive Engineers.