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Crush Project Management Problems Like a Pro

Boost efficiency and quality with these 5 project management tips.

One of our project management tips is to manage timeline expectations.

Whether it’s in your title or your job description, project management is a critical part of almost any job. We can all take projects from start to finish, but it’s how—and when—we cross that goal line that makes all the difference to our company, clients, and co-workers. That’s why we’re sharing our top five tips for upping your project management game to save time, money, frustration, and, quite possibly, your sanity.

1) Manage timeline expectations

As a project manager, you may be inclined to tell stakeholders what they want to hear, but it’s important to stick with promises you can keep. Before committing to a timeline, consider any potentially conflicting projects. Add cushion time into your plan whenever possible to account for inevitable setbacks.

2) Document changes and approvals

Projects change and evolve over time. Needs, timelines, and budgets shift, and the finished product rarely matches the original plan to a "T." In order to avoid confusion and finger pointing, it’s crucial to document all change requests and make sure all parties agree to significant modifications before you move forward.

3) Encourage feedback

There is a good chance your team is full of smart, creative people. It’s wise to tap into this valuable resource. Encourage members of different functional teams to share their thoughts and unique perspectives throughout the project and after it has wrapped. From this dialogue, you’re likely to find a treasure trove of fresh ideas for refining processes and boosting productivity.

4) Update, update, update

While deadlines and project plans shift, communication must stay constant. Frequent check-ins are key to maximizing efficiency and keeping projects moving forward. For most projects, weekly email updates will suffice. Include a recap of the progress and setbacks, a summary of upcoming deliverables, and next steps. Make sure your updates are clear, concise, and anticipate questions or concerns from all stakeholders.

5) Find a system that works and stick with it

It can be overwhelming to keep track of all of your project details, which is why it’s important to find a system that works for you and your team. If your company doesn’t have a project management system in place, Google’s free suite of apps offers practical and effective solutions. Create checklists in Google Sheets or share notes in Google Docs to aid in organization.

Whether you’re managing financial, insurance, retail, or marketing projects, use our project management tips to keep yourself and your team organized. What project management tools do you use and find helpful? Share them with us on Facebook!