There’s a world of difference between projects that are taken on and carried out willy-nilly, and those that are planned with precision and finesse. The secret to successful Project Management is that you’re going to have to put in the groundwork.

Being a super successful project manager isn’t just down to talent. Here’s our top 9 tips for a smooth, successful project.

1. Plan your project

Putting time, effort and thought into the planning of the project is the first and most critical step. While it might be tempting to plough ahead when enthusiasm is at its peak, you need to invest the time into setting realistic timelines, goals and definitive deadlines for your project. As the old saying goes, ‘If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.’

2. It’s all about the people

Having the right team in place to implement the project is another necessity when planning. Having the right people with the right skills to pull off the project as smoothly as possible is your aim.

3. Get everyone in on the loop

Having an in-depth discussion regarding responsibilities, expectations and deadlines is the next step. Have everyone’s roles laid out clearly and plainly, making sure everyone understands what’s expected of them.

4. Project management tools and tricks

Having an online management tool in place can be invaluable, allowing a clean, no-nonsense and organised approach to managing your project.  Research and decide on a project management tool that suits you and the needs of your project.

5. Do the most important work first

If you can get the biggest or most complex jobs done first, you’re off to an ideal start. That way, should issues arise, you will have time to iron them out.

6. Stay on top of the tasks

Regular updates are necessary to ensure everything is going smoothly on the project. If any problems arise, you can address them quickly before they become major problems and stall the project. Have brief update meetings regularly, on a daily or weekly basis, depending on how your project is progressing.

7. Successful project managers stay motivated

Stay motivated and ensure your team do too. Give them regular updates, keep them in the loop and provide constructive feedback on how their work is going. A good project manager stays on top of their team’s progress. A great project manager does this and gives them the autonomy to get creative, leading to a more effective and enthusiastic team.

8. Be flexible

Things don’t always go to plan, there will be hiccups and issues along the way. It’s the way you deal with those roadblocks that make all the difference. Being ready and alert to change will ensure everything runs smoothly.

9. Keep your eye on the prize

While getting stuck in and doing the legwork is an essential part of project management, keeping your eye on the end result, without getting bogged down with detail, is the key to keeping things moving.

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