With so much expected in the workplace these days, forward-thinking project managers must focus on honing their ability and mindset to prioritise, manage time effectively and multi-task. Yet sometimes even this isn’t enough.
In this blog, we share tips to stay ahead of the game and develop the right mindset to be the best project manager you possibly can!
Typically, identifying and planning for risks is a mindset that has to be learnt. Sometimes we are so concerned with getting ‘the pieces to fit’ perfectly that pausing even for a moment to consider what might go wrong rarely enters our minds. Until of course the worst happens!
Yes, it’s important to have the perfect plan, with great time frames, clear objectives and a healthy dollop of motivation. Yet to be a great project manager it’s also essential to include a generous allowance of time for those things that could go wrong.
Get expert advice
Talk to those who have gone before you. Nothing can beat a great source of experience and information to help you get your head around the difficulties that may lie waiting.
Examples of great questions to ask:
- “what should I expect?”
- “where will the challenges be?”
- “who can I speak to if this doesn’t happen?”
Great questions make genius happen, and more importantly, develop the mindset that is so important when managing projects.
Do an assessment
Set out a risk assessment and solution list. Take for example, an outdoor event of substantial size. The areas to consider will be staffing, logistics, attractions, equipment, vendors and suppliers – just don’t forget the weather!
Once you’ve done your assessment, make sure you have a backup plan for each of the areas listed. It’s like the Ghostbusters – who you gonna to call? And of course, make sure you then make these backup plans/people known to everyone.
Review and improve
Review what went well what could go better next time. Having the debrief is essential for the closure of a project. Ensure all avenues are considered and reflected upon by each team member. Try asking the real questions that will help drill down to a better understanding of cost gained and lost.
Focus on the areas where process and performance could become more efficient, productive and profitable. Again, the questions you ask at this stage will help develop the all-important mindset for true success.
Developing a focused project mindset is the true pinnacle of being a great project manager, where others anticipate what you will need doing, and the word risk stays where it belongs – in a dictionary.