A major key in the success of any organization is managing the ‘moving parts’ as smoothly and seamlessly as possible. At any given time, there are numerous projects underway, many of which require not only collaboration among several individuals, but integration across several departments. Because of this interdependence, projects that fall behind schedule (or worse, do not get completed at all), can greatly impede the progress of the organization and even endanger its viability.
To prevent this from happening to your organization, you need to make sure your employees stay on task, so your critical projects are completed on-time and on-budget. Here are four tips to get your projects completed and keep your organization moving forward:
Prioritize your Projects
Clearly, not every organization has the same objectives. For example, if you are a leasing and financial services company, your main goals are to profitably deliver a competitive product and grow market share within the niche you are targeting. On the other hand, if you are a non-profit, your main goal may be to develop the most effective and efficient fundraising methods. Be sure your projects are prioritized in keeping with the goals of your organization, so your high priority projects are the ones that move you toward achieving your objectives.
Establish Effective Communication Protocols
Communication is critical to the success of any project. This starts by making the tasks for each person assigned to the project absolutely clear, and establishing guidelines that ensure everyone is kept informed of the stage (and status) of project implementation. This includes keeping upper management informed and engaged (when appropriate).
Too many organizations are in what I call “reactive mode”; constantly scrambling from one project to another to keep the organizational damn from breaking. This is not a good place for any company to be, and if you want to be a strong player in your industry, it is not where you want to be either.
Once you have your projects prioritized and have strong communication protocols in place, it is important to take control of your projects and ensure that those with the highest priority are always on target to complete ahead of schedule, while at the same time managing those that are up and coming in the pipeline.
Consider Outside Help
Maybe your organization lacks someone with the subject matter expertise to effectively manage projects, and particularly projects that require cross-departmental collaboration. Or maybe you have someone inside the company, but their perspective is clouded by being too close to the situation. In either case, it is wise to consider bringing in an outside expert to help with your project management. By outsourcing this important task, your employees can stay focused on what they are trained to do, and you receive the professional guidance you need at a fraction of the time and cost of training someone from the inside.