Best Strategies for Successful Project Execution
By Deepesh KotwaniDec 12, 2019
There is a huge difference between a thing said and done, similarly, there is a difference between a project plan made and it’s execution according to the Project Planning.
The project plan comes into action when project execution begins. Therefore the planning stage is just a trailer and the main picture is the project execution. This stage comprises of all the outputs and deliverables. The outcome of this stage is the final product/service.
The Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) states that - “The executing process consists of those processes performed to complete the work defined in the project management plan to satisfy the project specifications”
Therefore this is the stage where the science of project management is transformed into art.
But a project faces tons of challenges and difficulties in the way of being successfully executed. These problems serve as a loophole between the strategy and execution.
According to PMI’s Pulse of the Profession Report 2017, many senior leaders acknowledge that their organizations often struggle to bridge the gap between strategy formation and its day-to-day implementation. The struggle is real; executive leaders that were surveyed reported that over the last year, only 60 percent of their strategic initiatives met goals.
In the book - “Filling Execution Gaps”, Todd Williams has identified six primary gaps that prevent successful project execution.
- Absence of common understanding
- Disengaged executive sponsors
- Misalignment with strategic goals
- Poor change management
- Ineffective corporate governance
- Lacklustre leadership
If these gaps are closed, you can realize repetitive project success.
The real challenge here is that all the six gaps should be necessarily fixed to ensure that the project will be a success. The key here is to understand how these gaps affect your project and then to prepare a strategy accordingly.
Strategies for Successful Project Execution:
Listed below are some strategies that can help you in successful project management:
1. Gain buy-in from your core team:
A team stands for a group of people working together to achieve the same goal. In a team, the contribution of each and every member is important for the successful completion of the project.
Therefore as a project manager, you should make sure that everyone feels that they are important. This makes them happy and confident, and now they can provide their 100% in the project. Here the main role is played by communication. It is important that you explain the impact of the project on the strategic goal and describe the project to your full knowledge.
Including the team would really make them feel special and appreciated and who knows what idea their minds would be holding that can just boost your project’s success.
Note - If you think about what they can suggest, do google how Colgate toothpaste increased its sales with an out of the box idea suggested by a junior.
2. Begin with the end in mind:
What is the end product of a project?
The final outcome ofcousre. But, how to achieve or explain an outcome when even you are not sure about it? This is the case in many projects, either the manager is not at all aware of the outcome or they are partly aware of what the stakeholders want instead of what they need and in this case, the end product is not the right one.
Then how is a manager supposed to deliver the right project or even prepare a plan? Just make sure that you are aware of the wants of the stakeholders and start the planning from the end to the start. The main benefit of this strategy is that now you don’t lack clarity on defined goals and objectives.
3. Get your projects across the finish line:
As a project manager, you need to have skill sets in the areas of leadership, strategic and business management, and technical project management.
But extraordinary projects require extraordinary efforts and ideas. You need to stand out from all the managers and you are just one idea away from that. It is necessary that you either push your project to the finish line or drag it there, as an unfinished project is just money and resources stuck at a place.
You should conduct in-office training to acquire necessary working knowledge for you and the team members.
4. Build a high performing team:
Many different factors result in boosting the project’s completion speed and reaching the project milestones on time or even faster. One such factor is the high performance enabled team.
Let’s face the truth, you cannot have all the best members in the team, but if you are willing to go to your limits, you can make every member of your team the best one available. Your work as a manager is to transform and train your members, so as you have the most efficient team. Many times people are not aware of what they are capable of doing something, till the time they do it, all they need is a push by you.
5. Manage accountability:
You have motivated the team, you have trained them, you have turned them into the best employees, now it’s their duty to achieve the tasks given to them.
This is just like the basic theory of Indian society, the parents grow their children into a well educated and successful person and after growing up, it’s the time for the child to return the favour and now take care of the parents. Likewise, you have provided the team everything and now it is their duty to work as per the project’s scheduling.
You can use Project Management Software to efficiently and easily manage the accountability of your team and handle your projects.
6. Listen to Leads:
The project managers don’t have crystal balls to see the future and know the risks and issues. But, due to their hard work and experience, they can develop a spider-sense, using which they can easily sense a risk or an issue when they are in their microforms and unlike spiderman can avoid them before it hits them.
Moreover, the manager should be up to listening to the members. Listening is a core skill that is needed to be efficient in communication and in project management also. Some matters are far away from your expertise and the collective knowledge of your team can help you to coup up with this.
7. Be open and flexible:
You must have heard lots of times that change is inevitable, but still, we face difficulty in accepting this. If you cannot avoid or control something, adjust with it, simple.
Moreover, a project manager will face different types of projects, thus he should be open to change and should be able to blend in every project. Being nimble, adaptive and able to course correct their projects, are some of the qualities that a project manager must-have.
Business guru, Michael LeBeouf has stated, “A satisfied customer is the best business strategy of all”, therefore a successfully executed project is the one that provides the maximum satisfaction to the customer.
Subscribe to SmartTask Blog
Get the latest posts in email.