If you aren’t dedicating someone to be the project manager for each project, you’re setting everyone up for disappointment. Here’s most of what I do to keep Brendan & Brendan chugging along at full steam ahead.
Step 1: Review the list
First thing in the morning, I review the priorities I had set for myself and the team the night before.
Step 2: Stand Up
We have a team stand up and meet for about 10 minutes first thing each morning and let each other know: what we’re working on, what we’re waiting for, and what we need from each other. We all work very closely together and often require items from each other to move forward. This is a great way to identify blockers, potential problems and figure out our workload.
Step 3: Check-ins
As project manager, I check in with at least 2 sets of clients every day, but often more than that. I ensure that project components are running on time. I get items from clients that my team is waiting for, I answer questions and I ensure that clients are happy. I’m really happy that I get to be our clients’ advocate within Brendan & Brendan, because I get to make sure that clients receive the things that they need and make sure our customers feel appreciated.
Step 4: Planning
When we start a new project, I’ll break it up into bite size chunks and assign them to various team members and see what the client would be responsible for. I set up a schedule for checking in, I plan a kickoff meeting and I make sure the deliverable dates are reachable. If a project is off-track, I’ll revise the schedule. If there are new deliverables, I’ll squeeze them into the schedule and assign the tasks to the appropriate people. If everyone at B&B are busy, I check to see if some aspects of projects can be pushed to a later date.
Step 5: Research
I meet new people all of the time – which means I get to learn about all kinds of personalities, industries, businesses and business models. Not all clients are the same, and I try to figure out how we can help them, and whether they can use our help (the answer is usually yes). This helps me familiarize myself with their projects and improve my current methodologies.
Step 6: Follow Up
As project manager, I’m often the liaison between Brendan & Brendan and our customers. It’s often me who will follow up on all kinds of concerns. Clients with questions, asset requirements from the team, a piece of information needed, all of these require some follow up. I make sure everyone gets a timely answer to their questions whether it’s “How much would it cost to add ___?” to “What is the company’s hex code for their colours?” All of these require answers, and I make sure that no one’s work is reduced to a standstill because they are missing information.
Step 7: Prioritize
Remember that list I told you about at the beginning of my day? A big part of project managing is never forgetting any loose ends. Before I leave for the day, I review what was completed, what needs to be carried over to the next day, and write it all down so I’ll be prepared for the next day.
Sounds like a standard “Lather, rinse, repeat” situation, huh? Hardly!