Project managing myself all up in dis bizness

So I have recently been having some trouble handling everything as PM, not going to deny it. There’s a lot to organise, a lot of responsibility with handling the client, facilitators and Leads, deciding on a final product that we’re happy with, delegating tasks to people weekly or more, as well as ensuring that we push fast enough for a finished project. (I only just found out this week that most PMs usually have a person delegated to doing all the documentation, while they keep the project running smoothly behind the scenes, MIND = BLOWN.) But anyway! I needed a way of figuring out what I was doing that wasn’t working too well, and how to help myself fix those things.

SO, I hired out a bunch of library books about project management (Which are now overdue, hi time management, more like I lost the receipt for a while and forgot when they were due. OH WELL.)to give me more of an idea of how to go about this whole thing. Hopefully it’s just as informative for you guys as it was for me! 🙂

Tools and Techniques:

  1. Walk the talk
  2. Be honest and straight
  3. Say what you think (back up with facts)
  4. Keep your cool
  5. Avoid blame culture

“You can learn a lot by putting the same question to different people.”

Handling the Boss:

  1. Keep the boss informed
  2. Dealing with a difficult boss:
    1. Make a note of the key points you’re going to make.
    2. Arm yourself with specific examples
    3. Rehearse key points and specific examples
    4. Try an informal oral approach
    5. If that doesn’t work, put your concerns in writing. Avoid any biased judgements or comments: be as factual and objective as you can.

Time Management:

  1. Effective time management requires:
    1. A clear focus on the results you’re seeking to achieve;
    2. Resistance to distractions and irrelevancies which get in the way and don’t help you achieve your objectives;
    3. Control of each day’s agenda so that you make the best possible use of the time available.
    4. The “to do” list
    5. Set deadlines
    6. Don’t be too reactive – first and foremost, focus on meeting your own objectives and targets. Discipline yourself to put your own interests first, THEN help others.
    7. Hide yourself away
    8. Take a break

Managing Meetings:

  1. Do we need a meeting?
  2. What’s the purpose?
  3. possible reasons include:
      • to pass on or obtain information
      • to seek views
      • to identify possible ways of dealing with a problem
      • to take a decision
      • to get people to take action
      • to persuade people to support a particular point of view
      • to resolve differences of opinion
      • to review progress on a project
      • to plan future work
  4. Keep length in mind
  5. Have no distractions (e.g. mobiles, laptops, etc.)
  6. End on an upbeat note
  7. Take notes
  8. Push your own point of view, but be open to others’

Managing Projects:

  1. Define the project, and make the purpose clear
  2. Identify risks and obstacles, rate them, (prevention, reduction, contingency, accept)
  3. Break the project down into manageable chunks
  4. Make sure your outputs are SMART
    • Specific
    • Measurable
    • Achievable/Agreed
    • Relevant/Realistic
    • Time-limited
  5. Planning and Implementation:
    • Gantt chart
    • Milestones and performance criteria
    • Be on time

Managing Communication:

  1. Choose how to communicate (Slack, email, phone, etc.)
  2. Understand the message you want to send
  3. Understand the audience
  4. KISS (Keep It Short and Simple)
  5. Avoid jargon

There’s definitely a lot more overall, with a bunch of other things I haven’t included that are much more specific to other areas of management, but yay! Brushing up on things is always a good help 🙂

Essentially, I found this book to be really concise and helpful, and I’ll hopefully be able to implement a lot of what I learned into the CITS project, and future ones that will hopefully come. 🙂


3 thoughts on “Project managing myself all up in dis bizness

  1. Nice one Dakota! I have learnt a lot from project managing the Jazz Band recordings for our studio unit and one of the hardest things is being a student and telling other students what to do. We aren’t in the best position to have complete control, but hey, we are dealing with humans, not robots. Some of my peers even dislike me now, which is unfortunate but try to stay focused on what is best for your project. If you do a good job and stay strong, then you never know what other opportunities will arise, I have been employed by the band I managed to PM their live performance so at the end of the day, the hard work is rewarding. Great blog and keep up the good work!

    Liked by 1 person

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