90% of Project Management is about doing the basics but doing them exceptionally well

by Barry on September 27, 2010

Post image for 90% of Project Management is about doing the basics but doing them exceptionally well

There is no great secret or magical potion to being a good Project Manager. 90% of the job is about doing the basics, but doing them exceptionally well.

What does this mean? You can ignore the long job spec that your HR group loves. Instead below is a list of the top ten things that a Project Manager does.

  1. Make sure that you have the right resources assigned and the resources know what they are supposed to be working on every single day
  2. Obtain status from every member of your team daily to make sure that they are on-track and no new issues popped up
  3. Produce status reports and review them with the client every week without fail
  4. Communicate with the client on a daily basis no matter what. Keeping the communication channel open with your client is one of the most important things that you can do
  5. Meet with your project team weekly to track status, resolve issues and talk big picture stuff
  6. Participate in client reviews to ensure that there are no schedule, scope, or cost impacts from client feedback
  7. Resolve issues as they come up
  8. Track your schedule and budget on a weekly basis, report discrepancies and make corrections as needed
  9. Manage your vendors and third party providers
  10. Report on KPIs to agency senior management every week

You can add hundreds of more tasks to this list but focusing on these ten mundane tasks day in and day out will get you 90% of the way there.


  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Google Bookmarks
  • del.icio.us
  • Digg

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

bantal boneka May 20, 2015 at 3:10 am

It is not my first time to pay a quick visit this website, i am browsing this site dailly
and obtain good facts from here everyday.

Reply

Jeff October 2, 2010 at 10:45 am

Thanks, Barry. Another good dose of sage advice. I’m with you on all of these. Not a low priority item in the bunch.

However, taken as a whole, they describe more of a defensive role for a PMs. Relegating PM’s to the backfield or admin functions is a bit of a plague in the agency world. I believe the greatest value from a PM is his/her ability to think 2 or 3 moves ahead. The topics are all good, I would tweak some of the emphasis, and rephrase a few of these as follows:

6. Prepare your team for (rather than, “Participate in”) client reviews to ensure that there are no schedule, scope, or cost impacts from client feedback

7. Anticipate issues and drive changes in your plan by conducting Risk Assessments / Mitigation Activities so you can avoid them before they come up.

- Jeff

Reply

Cristina October 1, 2010 at 7:13 pm

Just started a new job where I’m hybrid client engagement/strategy and project management. I was hired because of my strategic expertise and project management isn’t a strength of mine. This list is invaluable to me. It could not have landed in my lap at a better time. I would love to hear what others would add to the list!

- CR

Reply

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: