One of the best things about working in project management is that each piece of work brings up new challenges and learning possibilities for you to deal with. This means that you get the chance to learn something new every time around. So what kind of thing could you have learned on your last project?
Some New Skills
It is a bit of a scary feeling when you first realize that you need to learn new skills to complete the project you have been given. Wouldn’t life be a lot easier if you could just carry on doing the same things every single time? Well, it would be but it would be a lot less interesting as well. When you work in a project manager role you soon learn that gaining new skills is a part of the job which simply can’t be avoided. Of course, if you look at it in the right way then this makes the job a lot more interesting and also improves your chances of getting an even better role given to you in the future. The best thing you can do is learn as many new skills as possible and then put them to good use on a regular basis. You certainly won’t get very far if you try and maintain your existing skill base without learning anything new.
To Have Confidence in Yourself
Once your project reaches a successful conclusion you have earned the right to look back on it and feel proud of yourself. Why not spend a few minutes trying to remember how you felt as the piece of work kicked off and how you have progressed since then? It can do your confidence a world of good to realize that you have come a long way since the beginning. This is especially important in your first few projects, when you might feel a bit out of your depth in the new role. After you have done this a few times you should have a much greater level of confidence in your ability to do the job to a high standard.
How to Lead a Team
The team leading aspect is one part of the project management role which a lot of people have problems with. If you aren’t used to leading and organizing a team of workers then you might wonder how you can possibly do this and carry out your own work to a high standard as well. You will certainly be helped if the rest of the team is made up of experienced project workers but that isn’t all that you need. In order to lead the team well you need to work out what motivates them, what skills they need to learn and how to get the best out of them. This kind of thing comes over time but you can still get off to a strong start by learning more about team leading before your first project. Once this is done you can then sit back and consider how well you managed to get everyone pulling in the right direction.
The Importance of Planning
Few new project managers seem to appreciate the importance of the project plan right away. I know that I saw this as more of a nuisance than a potential help when I first started writing one. However, it is only once the project is all over and you look back on it that you realize the value of a top quality plan. If you ran into some problems along the way then there is a good chance that the plan was involved in it and that a badly written one made the situation more complicated than it already was. Once you realize the important of planning in project management then you will be a lot more comfortable in the role.
How to Deal with Stakeholders
If you have never had much contact with senior figures within the company then you might find it rather daunting to deal with the project’s stakeholders. These people play a huge role in getting the piece of work completed successfully and you will want to learn how to treat them as soon as you can. This will probably come naturally over time but in your first project there is no harm in asking them how often they want to see reports and get invited to project meetings. If you can establish a strong bond with the stakeholders then you should find that your next project is a lot easier than the one which you have just completed.
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