How can project managers stay on track?

Tuesday, March 4th, 2014 By Jack Nevison

One of the most difficult challenges facing any project manager is the task of keeping a project on track. There are many variables that can lengthen the amount of time necessary to complete various stages of a project, and all must be monitored if crucial deadlines are to be met. If managers want to avoid delays and expensive cost overruns, they would do well to consider some helpful advice, such as that which is provided by a recent article on CIO.

According to the news source, managers should be heavily involved in the planning that occurs during—and especially before—the earliest stages of the project. It does not help to set unrealistic goals that will later demoralize the team. Instead, leaders should meet with all of the parties involved, from sales managers to IT professionals, to discuss how the project will go forward and to collect feedback on the plan. This way, everyone will be on the same page, and the project's goals are more likely to be reasonable and attainable.

As the project proceeds, the manager's next major task is to ensure that proper communication continues. It can be easy for different departments within a company to get so focused on their own goals that they forget to confer with anyone else, but this is a recipe for poor coordination. That's why it is important for managers to hold regular status meetings that can keep everyone up to date.

At New Leaf Project Management, our 3-day program, "Five Sigma Project Management," will show you how to plan and manage your projects effectively. In addition, our online QPM games and free white papers let you learn while you earn affordable PDU credits for PMP recertification.

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