OK, you’ve been handed a plum assignment and appointed the project manager. Congratulations. Before the project’s demanding stakeholders start breathing down your neck, you need to scope the project and map out a schedule everyone can stick to. But even before that, you need to put together a team project.
- Project Sponsor: Every project must have a sponsor to whom the project will report. The sponsor is responsible for procuring the resources the project team needs and resolving the hurdle the team faces during the course of the projects.
- Project Manager: Every project must have a project manager whose responsibilities have to be defined precisely. A key understanding of the areas of decision-making authority and his responsibilities must be agreed to, written down, and distributed.
- Project Members: After considering the expertise needed for the project’s mission, a team has to be formed. Each member’s expertise needs to be defined and the team roster completed. It is ideal if the project team can bring complementary strengths amongst the members of the project team.
The single most important factor in the success of a project is the project team. The project team has to deliver on what is promised to the sponsors of the project, allocate resources properly, and facilitates communication with all the stakeholders.
The project sponsor, project manager, and the rest of the project team must be announced officially, with a broad description of each team member’s roles and responsibilities.
Recommended Book: ‘The Lazy Project Manager’ by Peter Taylor covers the critical aspects of project management that managers must focus on and spend their time on. The subtitle is how to be twice as productive and still leave the office early. Peter Taylor divides project management into three phases: startup, execution, and closing. Most of ‘The Lazy Project Manager’ is spent on the startup phase, effort that is singular to the success of any project: this involves planning for how the project should be executed and the communications that can ensure that all the project stakeholders know of the plans and what their contribution should be and prevent project scope creep. With successful efforts at the startup phase, a project manager needs to monitor the project’s progress and delegate the real work to team members. In the conclusion phase, the project team should meet with customers and sponsors to conduct a “post-mortem” and gather lessons to apply to other projects.