Project management strategies are one of the most important ways to help your team do better work. While there are many different programs and models online to help you manage your work projects, there are also a few guiding principles that need to be discussed.
Keep reading to find out more about the nine principles of project management and how ScrumGenius can help you seamlessly incorporate them into your teams.
What is Project Management?
While project management can take many different forms and structures, it includes any management activity meant to achieve all of a project’s goals and objectives in the chosen time period. It is the discipline of planning, organizing, securing, managing, leading and controlling resources to achieve your project’s goals.
Depending on the type of project your team is undergoing, the project management format you chose can be very complex or fairly simple. The primary constraints in projects are generally scope, time, quality and budget.
The History of Project Management
Project management became a distinct methodology in the late 1950s, though it developed from the confluence of several different types of engineering in the early 1900s. At this time, it was most frequently applied towards engineering projects, though it is used far more widely now.
In 1969, the Project Management Institute (PMI) was formed, and it would be crucial to defining project management over the next few decades. The PMI offered certifications for project managers and published the first-ever Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge in 1996, which is still updated regularly.
While historically a project manager was often a dedicated employee, today anyone can be a project manager—no complex certifications needed. This is largely due to the flexibility of modern project management software, which is made to help teams do their best work.
How Project Management Systems Can Help You
Implementing a good project management system can have many benefits for your team. For one, having clear, organized plans for your project can help improve team collaboration; knowing what to do next can be extraordinarily helpful in working together to improve your team’s output.
Project management solutions can also help eliminate confusion within the project by defining everyone’s roles—meaning tasks are completed by those they are assigned to and details are less likely to fall through the cracks.
The well-defined goals and roles in project management can also help improve your team’s effectiveness and focus by giving teams motivation and clear objectives to work towards.
All of these benefits together can help to increase your team’s efficiency and communication, boosting your workflow and keeping your projects running smoothly.
The 9 Project Management Principles
Now that we’ve gone over the basics of project management, let’s discuss the nine guiding principles you should incorporate to run your smoothest projects yet.
It’s incredibly important to make sure your projects have a formal structure—including processes, procedures, and tools. This will help your project stay on track, boost communication and prevent work overlap.
Every project should have a plan, which will ensure tasks are prioritized and managed successfully. This includes a timeline, task prioritization and milestones to work towards.
Having a good project sponsor can be critical to your project’s success. A sponsor’s role is to champion your project and act as a spokesperson for it to other executives, communicating goals and objectives to them.
They can also be especially helpful if you run into roadblocks like resource losses by dealing directly with higher-level problems for you.
Goals and Outcomes
Clear requirements and objectives are essential in defining if a project is successful or not. One of the most common factors behind failed projects is a lack of clear end goals.
Your project requirements and approval criteria should be determined at the beginning of your project, and everyone involved in the process—team members, managers, customers and stakeholders—should have a chance to review and add to them. It’s your project manager’s responsibility to oversee these goals and make sure they are reached.
Every team should have clearly-defined roles and responsibilities. While the entire team should be completing work, there are also several higher or external roles that are vital to the team.
For instance, the project manager manages the team and helps them work towards their milestones and goals—their work is essential to the smooth running of your project. Likewise, stakeholders will have an important role in giving feedback and shaping the objectives of your project.
Management of Project Changes
Your project needs to have a well-defined scope to ensure it meets customer expectations. It also needs to be carefully kept in check, as without strong change management, your project can grow beyond your initial guidelines and suffer from scope creep.
It’s important to be able to add additional features if they come up, but if you don’t carefully control changes to your project, you can end up with an over-expensive and late deliverable.
Risk Recognition and Management
There will be risks and unexpected events in almost every project. Something might go wrong, or you might encounter an unexpected roadblock that can affect your resources or work.
Fortunately, there are ways to minimize risks and their impacts. This can include identifying, evaluating and monitoring risks, as well as creating action plans for when risks do occur.
Value Delivery Capabilities
In a project, your value delivery capabilities are the tools, processes and procedures that help you deliver value to your customers. This can include project systems like scheduling software or project management processes like Agile methodology.
The more established and tested your processes and procedures are, the more likely your project is to be a success.
There are three main components to the typical project: cost, schedule and scope. Each of these components needs to have a plan that your team’s performance can be measured against.
When these three baseline plans are integrated, they form a performance management baseline. This means that if you have a change in any one of your components, the other two will also be impacted; for instance, if you have a scope change, you’ll be able to see how it impacts your project schedule and cost, allowing you to better monitor the changes to your project.
This in turn can help improve overall decision-making within your project.
Good communication is vital to your project’s success—including all project activities, risks, issues and status. Everyone from team members to stakeholders must be kept in the loop.
Furthermore, transparency between the team is vital. Everyone needs to be open about their tasks and goals in order to work together seamlessly with their team members.
How ScrumGenius Helps You Embody the 9 Principles
Though there are many project management solutions that can help you and your team manage your projects, there are many other solutions that can help you in ways you may not think of.
Software like ScrumGenius can come with many important benefits for you and your team. As an asynchronous scrum reporting bot, we allow project team members to quickly answer questions based on goals, completed tasks and blockers.
This in itself helps boost communication between team members, and helps you clearly define and monitor your project’s goals. In addition, our daily, weekly or ad hoc reporting systems helps you create structure for your team, allowing your project to run even smoother than before.
One last benefit to using ScrumGenius for project management is that recording blockers and tasks allows teams to easily deal with and manage any changes to your project’s flow, whether that be new tasks or any problems you might encounter. While this info goes directly to the report manager as it comes it, it will also be sent out to all team members in a summary email, allowing everyone to be kept in the loop.
Learn more about ScrumGenius and how it can help you today.