Project Management Skills You Need to Learn in 2020

Project Management Skills You Need to Learn in 2020

Being a project manager does not mean sitting on a head chair and giving orders. A project manager is liable for inspecting a project from its initial stages to outlining and all the way through to finish and delivery. And all of this happens after managing the project team, assigning their tasks and responsibilities, observing their progress, all while being under a strict deadline with a restricted budget. In short, being a PM is not easy. So here are some project management skills you need to master to become a successful PM.

Project Management Skills

In this article, we have included some basic and crucial skills a project manager needs to have in today’s rapidly developing world, why they are so essential to have, and what you can do to master them.

Communication

Communication - Project Management Skills

One of the basic skills for project management is communication and essentially, a project manager’s job consists of communication with their team, with entrepreneurs and merchants, with project stakeholders and even clients. That’s why being qualified to carry one’s perception, opinions, and thoughts in a way that’s open, practical, and simply recognized, as well as being able to understand others, is an outright necessity.

Negotiation

Negotiation

Right after the communication comes negotiation. Executing a project is much like politics. It usually involves a group of different people, sometimes with different aims and opinions, and it’s the PM’s responsibility to find the middle spot and make certain that everyone is satisfied. A good project manager is being able to get everyone on the same platform and find a solution on which everyone agrees, or at the very least nobody feels their idea is neglected, is an ability that every successful project manager needs.

Leadership

Leadership

If there is one skill that describes the role of a project manager, it’s leadership. As a project manager, you don’t just supervise people around, you lead. You set the idea, set goals, and drive your team members to achieve them. And it’s your responsibility to make certain that everything along the process is going fine at all times – issues are quickly dealt with, any proposals or inquiries are discussed, and team performance is always observed and assessed with timely feedback.

Planning and Scheduling

Planning and Scheduling

Another one of the basic skills needed for successful project management is planning and scheduling. Without a plan, there is no project. So the strength to establish the project goals and split them down into actionable tasks. Good planning includes things on both the larger-scale – outline scope, material requirements, timelines, assessments, deadlines to smaller, as well as more ordinary things – organizing your projects throughout the day and making a to-do list with your everyday goals.

Risk Management

Risk Management - Project Management Skills

Directly linked to planning is risk management skills. Planning a project always involves several risks. Things can go reverse; it’s just the nature of business. And it is your responsibility as a project manager to analyze those risks to make certain they don’t become obstacles, as well as have a substantial plan for how to alleviate them if they do.

Time Management

Time Management

A big duty of being a project manager is determining and communicating what your team will be spending their time on, as well as keeping control of your own time. And this is where a strong grip on time management becomes really important. As a person in charge of a team of people with dozens of various tasks, there’s an unending list of things you need to be aware of at any given time. A good project manager can quickly decide which tasks need preference over others, what tasks are the most critical and should be worked on right now and which ones to delay for some time.

How to Manage Tasks Better with Basic Planning?

How to Manage Tasks Better with Basic Planning?

If you are wondering how to manage tasks better, then you are in the right place. One of the best techniques to stay organized at work is with a well-structured strategy. Not only does a task management plan give specific administration in your own daily efforts, it gives you better command over group or collaborative goals. In this article, we will discuss the basic planning tips to manage your task better.

How to manage tasks?

A few of basic planning elements form the basis of most management tactics. So if you’re ready to learn how to organize tasks at work with a strategy to improve productivity and keep distractions at bay, keep reading.

Break big goals into small objectives

Break big goals into small objectives - How to manage tasks?

Breaking large-scale goals into smaller, more actionable steps is the only approach to map out a feasible method for organizing work and marking progress.

By working with a combo of short-term and long-term objectives, you can:

  • prioritize and direct actions that will need to be taken
  • recognize how each action suits into the whole

Clarify objectives by converting them into series of tasks

Clarify goals

Arranging mini-objectives into tasks and sub-tasks allows you produce a range of daily and weekly to-do’s for yourself or team members. One benefit of understanding precisely what needs to get done and when is that you won’t feel so confused by the bigger endgame.

So to stay on point, provide your process a boost with task management software that will also track your time.

Lay out and manage task timelines visually

Manage task timelines visually

Running multiple projects – whether they’re daily, weekly, or group project one-offs – is much less of a trouble when you have a crystal-clear view of:

  • the start date and end date for each task
  • the various milestones along the way

Not only does visualizing your plan make it more comfortable to evaluate your own progress, it allows you inspect the status of shared tasks and revise or update pre-planned actions as required.

Implement this plan with centralized system

How to manage tasks?

Now that you have a strong hold on how to manage tasks for better performance at work, how do you bring these fundamental elements together?

Having determined that the most reliable approach to stay organized at work is with a personal or team task management plan, it should also be obvious that the best approach to design and implement that plan is with the help of one centralized system.

What is Float Project Management and what are the Benefits of It?

What is Float Project Management and what are the Benefits of It?

If you’ve been working in project management for quite some time, then you have presumably heard about float project management. While it is not so famous as other project management structures, float project management can be an effective way to boost your projects and give your productivity a great rise.

Float or slack is the amount of time an assignment or task can be delayed without it affecting the overall deadline or other assignments in the project. Counting them can assist you to verify your project plans and make certain you recognize whether you’ll be able to finish projects on time.

What is Float Project Management?

What is Float Project Management?

Float project management is a kind of project management that assists you to verify your project plans and work out how much time individual assignments can shift without affecting the overall timeline or delivery date.

If you already have a reliable method of handling the assignments that make up a project but cope with resource management or resource scheduling, float project management can be an exceptional approach to evaluate your team’s time more precisely and stop projects missing their deadlines.

What are the Benefits of it?

Benefits of Float Project Management

Float project management is extremely helpful because it assists distinguish which tasks are ready to be affected by delay or restructuring without harming your overall project. It also assists you to stop cutting path tasks from being taken back or moved which then prevents your project from missing the deadline.

Being able to distinguish float or slack in your projects is especially beneficial. Finding compliance in your plans indicates you can improve resource scheduling without requiring additional client or management approval for new deadlines. 

How to Calculate Float in Project Management?

How to Calculate Float in Project Management?

If all of this seems beneficial to you, you’re apparently thinking about how to determine float time in your projects. Luckily, float can be readily calculated using the float time formula.

The float time formula works out float using the earliest and latest start or finish times for individual tasks. The formulas are:

  • Float = Late Start – Early Start 
  • Float = Late Finish – Early Finish

For illustration, let’s consider two tasks, Task A and Task B. Task B can’t start until Task A is completed and Task A takes 5 days. But in your schedule, you’ve allotted 15 days for Task A to be finished. That implies that Task A could start 10 days after the scheduled start date without affecting Task B. The float for Task A is then 10.

How to Make Project Cost Breakdown?

How to Make Project Cost Breakdown?

Every project needs a proper planning before execution. Making work scope and estimating the time and resources for the completion of any project because it provides the basic idea of the next important step; estimating project cost. Though initial estimates are hardly accurate, it is possible to increase the accuracy by creating project cost breakdown and in these business guides will help you to do so.

In any case, clarity and logical structure of the cost breakdown is a must. Structuring a cost breakdown clearly and correctly is a tedious task, but it is important for future communication with clients and for a better understanding of how costs can be managed in the course of the project.

Project Cost Breakdown

In different project evaluation schemes, project cost breakdown can be used for producing more precise assessments of the ultimate figures. Given below are the tips to create a project cost breakdown.

Expert judgment

Expert judgment - Project Cost Breakdown

Experts’ evaluations used to make up for the lack of transparency in existing cost breakdown can control cost drivers where more clarity is needed. While this approach is used to come up with more precise calculations, a notable difference between the planned and the final figure is still possible.

Analogous estimation

Analogous estimation

Comparing estimations based on cost breakdown for earlier projects with new similar ones assists improve estimation methods and get a more detailed evaluation of project costs, profitability, and overall outcome.

Bottom-up analysis

Bottom-up analysis - Project Cost Breakdown

Planned project costs are structured on the basis of the costs of small tasks, services, and product parts. High efficiency is obtained by taking into account all cost drivers, including costs of everyday works, overhead, and potential extra costs.

Top-down analysis

Top-down analysis

A top-down cost structure can be used for coming up with a ballpark assessment of the final cost. When using it, it’s necessary to factor in different supplementary costs not included in the initial assessment.

Parametric estimation

Parametric estimation

This estimation process can be used with cost structures where cost drivers are predictable and calculable. On the basis of existing data, various parameters can be determined with a high precise degree.

How to Organize Your Day at Work?

How to Organize Your Day at Work?

There are times and situations when we thought that we could’ve done more work or possibly faced some situations when some critical tasks were left unfinished by the end of the day. How about the feeling of misused time? It happens because of a lack of strategy for organizing our day. If any of those situations feel familiar, it’s important to do some organizing. In this article, we will tell you some simple tips on how to organize your day at work.

Organize Your Day at Work

Be on Time

Be on Time - Organize Your Day at Work

Reaching at your workplace on time isn’t just an everyday habit. It assists you to stay focused and confident and gives more time to get ready for the day’s work. Not to mention leaving a big impression about you on your coordinates and managers.

Make To-Do List

To-Do list

It is productive to make a better list of tasks that needed to be done before you start working properly. Start with the most crucial ones — those need to be done first. This will allow you to concentrate on them more and give sufficient time to complete them precisely. The simple and short ones should be left for later, as you won’t need much focus to finish them. Note that your list can be digital — it’s more comfortable and more natural to operate.

Check your mail

Checking emails

Checking your email before doing important work should be a rule, as it can distract you later. While checking your inbox center on the most relevant messages and respond only to the most critical ones. It’s straightforward to misplace yourself in checking your email continually, so keep it to a bare minimum — no more than 3-4 check per day. The same is the case with checking voice mails.

Reward Yourself

Reward yourself

Motivation and recognition are very essential for productive work. So it’s great to present yourself small rewards after finishing a tough task. Even something as minute as a tea break can work phenomenally after an obnoxious meeting with a client.

Take Breaks

Take short breaks - Organize Your Day at Work

Even on the most hectic day, you need a pause. Continuous work produces a lot of stress and isn’t as powerful as you might imagine. Your mind and body require some downtime every now and then. It’s best to spend your break outside your workplace, as it assists you to relax and tackle the difficulty later with new enthusiasm. Frequent breaks are great for maintaining your productivity high every day.

Avoid Multitasking

Avoid Multitasking

It takes a long time to regain your concentration on the task at hand if you take your focus away from it, it will take you much more time to regain it. So if you need to be productive, set your mind on one task at a time. As a non-focused mind is not useful for productivity and achieving a desirable goal. 

Be Realistic

Set realistic goals

Confidence is helpful but you should keep it in line at the workplace. Your goals must be realistic and you have to recognize that it can be tricky to accomplish everything you’ve planned for a particular day. The same task will be presumably left for the next day. Just try to organize the remaining tasks for the next day. This will assist you to be free of depression and anxiety.

How to Become a Successful Manager?

How to Become a Successful Manager? Business Guides

Managing people is truly a proudest experience for every worker in his career however; it can be the most difficult and bitter one if not done right. Becoming a manager for the first time is truly a tough responsibility as you are not only accountable for yourself but also of your subordinates. So in this article, we will discuss how to become a successful manager that will ensure the success of your project.

Become a Successful Manager

It is natural for the new managers to make mistakes but the best ones are those who learn from it. As these are the critical parts of learning, so here are some easy tips to be a successful manager.

Become a Successful Manager

Don’t micromanage

As we previously discussed the effects of micromanagement on productivity, it is one of the common mistakes most of the managers make in their first few months. They try to check if the task accomplished by their team came out precisely the way they wanted. However, this should not be always the case.

Micromanagement

Some tasks can take a lot of time that managers usually believe that they should just complete them themselves. A task that would take them an hour to get done can take at least three hours for the other team members. So be patient and give your employees some time.

Appreciate teamwork

Though it is in the man’s nature to see the mistake in other people’s work and find no time to confer appreciation. But this is a significant aspect of a manager’s role and should be one of the first things in your new manager checklist.

Improve the spirit of teamwork

Having casual discussions with the employees under your administration is necessary in this regard to improve the spirit of teamwork. Talk with your team members to see if they are encountering any problems or if they are upset with particular tasks. As a manager, your role is to recognize how you can support them to enhance and empower their development.

Ditch emails and Use tracking software

Misusing email for all work-related conversation is a typical mistake for rising managers. When it comes to communicating at work, avoiding emails conjointly is one of the best ideas you can do.

Timelo - Time Tracking Software

Ditch excel sheets and use a time tracking software like Timelo that will give you a comprehensive summary of tasks and keep you updated on their progress. It will also enable your subordinates to track their performance according to the time that will ultimately help them to improve productivity.

Make your team independent

Making your team independent is one of the most useful approaches for any manager or entrepreneur. Don’t try to control your employees, unleash them. Just show them the right path and make them understand the ultimate goal. Leave the rest onto them.

Become a Successful Manager

Help them only when you see they really need it, let them tackle the problems. This will also improve their interest in work and self-confidence.

Stay positive

It’s more likely for a first-time manager to get discouraged. Yes, mistakes are unavoidable, and they are ever so obvious when you work with people on a day-to-day basis. But there is one thing we should all remember: we can do better. Try hard to always bring confidence in your life.

Successful Entrepreneur

The start of being a manager is usually the toughest, but it’s also one of the most consequential learning chances in any profession. Being a gentle and professional manager needs commitment and continuous improvements along the way.

Budgeting Time for a Remote Team

How Budgeting Time for a Remote Team can Help Your Business?

The most absolute purpose of every project manager is to get the maximum out of every minute of the working day. In this quest, time is an important factor. If you save time and manage it well, you are also saving budget, effort, and stress. It is a great thing to improve your productivity. In this article, we will discuss how budgeting time for a remote team can help your business.

Budgeting Time for a Remote Team

Time budgeting is a technique that encourages you to organize your working day in a more useful style. It suggests that you’re more prone to get through all the assignments you have proposed. Without setting aside chunks of time, it’s much more natural to get rattled by other people’s craft and plans and not focus on what you should be doing.

Budgeting Time for a Remote Team

Useful for the entire team

Time budgeting is also an exceptional method of developing clarity within your company and employees. By putting blocks into your calendar for all to see, your plan becomes clear and accessible. Employees can accomplish their responsibilities and manage time more efficiently; see fields where people are probably reproducing work, and better plan conferences and other projects.

Teamwork

Improve work-life balance

By setting all your programs in your calendar, you can view and recognize precisely how long you are spending on various tasks. Possibly you notice that something is taking up an excessive amount of your time, or that something is being missed. By getting this summary, it becomes much more comfortable to prioritize your tasks next time as you receive good working guides.

Improve work-life balance

If you also save some time for lunch and put it in your plan, you’re much less prone to work through it or end up eating at your desk.

Timeboxing

Timeboxing is a unique behavior of budgeting your time, which is related to blocking but comes at it from a slightly unconventional perspective. Rather than setting a 2-hour block to accomplish a task, you allocate a specific amount of time for that task which is bound and can’t be prolonged. What you produce and have at the end of the allocated time is the accomplished task, no matter what time it is in.

Timeboxing - Budgeting Time for a Remote Team

Timeboxing helps to limit the amount of time you spend on a task, decreasing time loss and in theory enabling you to work on more tasks. It can be simple to just spend an additional half an hour on something, but not make much difference to the outcome.

How to Avoid Shiny Object Syndrome and Stay Focused?

How to Avoid Shiny Object Syndrome and Stay Focused?

You might have heard about shiny object syndrome. If not, we will tell you about it and how it affects you. Shiny object syndrome is like a tendency for some people to pursue something new, be it a unique business plan, device, or purpose, rather than to stay focused on what they’re doing. In this article, we will discuss how to avoid shiny object syndrome and stay focused to improve productivity.

Avoid Shiny Object Syndrome

This phenomenon is very common in entrepreneurs and most of them suffer from shiny object syndrome each day. It’s the ultimate distraction that happens when you’re expected to be concentrating on one thing but then suddenly, something else looks more engaging so it diverts your attention. As a consequence, your focus gets shifted and you probably don’t end up getting any useful outcomes.

Set your goals

Set your goals - Avoid Shiny Object Syndrome

We’ve always been a huge devotee of the idea of setting goals as it really does assist you to concentrate on your strengths. As you know, your goals should be precise and defined. And if you are having a difficult time concentrating, set goals that explicitly specify the 1 or 2 tasks that you are going to work on.

Make to-do list

Make to-do list

Each morning, make sure to not make these mistakes in the first 10 minutes of your day. After your morning walk and breakfast, grab a pen and a paper and make a to-do list of the top 5 or so things that you most want to achieve for the day. Then number them in priority and work on number 1 until it is completed before moving onto the next ones. This helps more than you might think.

Remove distractions

Avoid distractions to improve productivity

We all face many distractions in the workspace. Either it is email, social media or chatting with colleagues. To avoid those workplace productivity killers, set up particular times a day where you are “allowed” to check email or chat with your friends. You will notice that being a little more punctual with your time will assist you to perform much more.

Time tracking software

Last but not least. At the end of the day, you have to compare what you have done so far after spending your 7 to 9 hours in the office. With a time tracking software, you can truly track your time and see what you have accomplished in the given time. This will encourage you to improve your productivity as well.

Timelo - Time tracking software

Apart from that, the latest time tracking tools like Timelo are also providing you the options of project billing and invoicing, expense tracking, project management with a user-friendly interface. Also, you can enjoy the 15-day free trial with no credit card required.

Shiny object syndrome can kill your productivity and limit you from reaching so many aims and milestones in your business. Keeping distractions at bay so you can fully concentrate to ensure the success of your project is important and the above-discussed tips will definitely help.

What are the Effects of Micromanagement on Productivity?

What are the Effects of Micromanagement on Productivity?

Micromanagement is the act of managing every perspective of how another employee does particular jobs or his duties. This method of management does more harm than good for any business. It implies that a supervisor either doesn’t trust a worker or doesn’t have confidence in his experience to do a task. Here are some of the effects of micromanagement on productivity.

Effects of Micromanagement on Productivity

Micromanagement typically has an adverse effect. Like bullies, micromanagers exercise unsuitable power over others through repeated criticism and authority by their unnecessary consideration to small details. This is one of the productivity killers.

Effects of Micromanagement on Productivity

Lower Productivity

Micromanagement hinders employee productivity. Managers are supposed to observe employees’ performance and give direction or correction whenever needed. Though, the time it needs to explain to workers every assignment ultimately will consume the time dedicated to the original production.

Employee productivity

Whether micromanagement transpires in a production-oriented or service-based work conditions, it can dissolve into time properly spent meeting business requirements and assisting customers’ demands. Employees whose performance evaluation grades are based on production levels may be estimated lower than anticipated due to no mistake of their own.

Increase Employee Turnover

Constant micromanagement usually drives people to resign their jobs. It kills the manager/ employee relation. The steadfast monitoring of everything they perform, repetitively going over every detail of their task and revising their work the way the micromanager would do it consumes skilled employees and forces them looking for a new job somewhere else. 

Employee turnover - Effects of Micromanagement on Productivity

Lack of Engagement

When micromanaged, employees start to feel a lack of authority to perform to their best. When this occurs, they’ll gradually lose their confidence and motivation, and desire to go the extra mile for a task and taking satisfaction in what they do. They’ll restrict themselves to what is demanded by their manager. This will certainly reduce their productivity. 

How to Establish Rapport with a Remote Client?

How to Establish Rapport with a Remote Client?

If you operate or work a remote team, one of the perspectives you immediately discern is the importance of communication. Discovering the best ways to interact with your team is important when you’re not working face-to-face because you’re missing most of the context of each person’s position. In this article, we will discuss how to establish rapport with a remote client.

Establish Rapport with a Remote Client

Establish Rapport with a Remote Client

When you start a new job in a remote team, it can seem very unfamiliar. Although it might be less rebellious than going to a new office full of people you don’t know, it can also be more isolating, as you don’t have an obvious alternative to get to know everyone instantly, especially those you don’t work with directly. And yes, all the people are not the same. As some are introverts and extroverts.

Build trust

Rather than consider your remote worker repeal one of your choices or opinions, first understand if there is a miscommunication.

Build trust with your clients

For instance, when discussing a plan, if there is a dispute or disagreement, have a prompt call about it. You might notice that there was never any dispute, to start with. Rather, you misjudged one another and obliged to clear things up.

Organize weekly video meetings

Meetings are the essential building block of all industries. We cooperate with our supervisors, interact with employees and get everyone on the same platform for group meetings to share ideas and suggestions. It is just like the importance of online customer reviews.

Organize weekly video meetings - Establish Rapport with a Remote Client

When you’re working remotely, meetings are not just important for communication knowledge, but for building rapport. Weekly video calls are the most reliable technique to talk to your team when being there in person isn’t an alternative.

Friendly Environment

Whether you have an individual or a full team of remote workers, it’s necessary to build a positive, shared environment that will eventually improve the spirit of team work.

Create friendly environment in the office

This is an environment where each employee should feel easy sharing openly. Not only articles concerning their work, but also like concerns and small talk outside of that.

Define guidelines

A business’s assumptions about when, where, and how to work can be troublesome for on-site workers. For remote workers though, effective guidelines for working remotely assist workers to make the most out of working from home.

Define goals - Establish Rapport with a Remote Client

For instance, a small commute produces a significant boundary between work and life, so something as simple as taking a 10-minute walk before sitting down at home to work supports clear the mental slate. Also, avoid these mistakes you make in the first 10 minutes of the day.

Use a Time tracking software

Last but not least. Use a best time tracking software that will keep the record of your working hours. It will also help you to improve your productivity as you can notice by yourself the progress of your work.

Use a time tracking software

Timelo is a complete tool for businesses and freelancers that will also take care of billing and invoices. Apart from that, the best thing is you can enjoy the 15-day free trial with no credit card required.