How well do you drive your car? Can you improve the miles per gallon (or litre) by driving just that little bit slower or avoiding breaking so sharply or anticipating the traffic ahead?
Few of us admit to driving badly…how many admit to not being as effective at work as they could be – including project managers?
Some tough questions to ask and even tougher to answer
There is huge pressure on project managers to deliver projects and deliver projects effectively and during project courses I frequently get course participants complaining about volumes of work; business as usual clashing with project work. It is at this point I ask the participants a range of questions:
• just how well do you manage your time – can you get more with less; dreadful words I know but take a look, are you really managing your time well? Why not get others to answer that one or you!
• do you really need that meeting ? Do you need it and are your meetings achieving what you and others want? How do you know?
• can you reduce the quality of a product or maybe the overall quality of the project
• what will make project communications more effective? 68% of project managers suggest that project communications are poor or very poor a big risk to projects
• can you take any short cuts in your project without increasing risks? Slavish adherence to the project methodology can impact on project delivery
• how well are project changes managed – are they simply accepted or do you have a process that checks whether they should be accepted?
Are we all up to the challenges ahead?
These are only some of the questions that I ask. Participants suggest that they find them difficult but important questions to answer.
I cannot answer the questions for you. But, and it is a big but; you should be asking yourself the above questions and many more.
Athletes, soccer players, swimmers etc. all spend hours and hours looking at themselves to improve their skills. The demands being made on project managers is great and we all need to be up to the challenge. When was the last time you took a look at yourself?