So far we’ve covered four of my five topics on smart project management…the idea of working smarter – but not necessarily harder – on the projects we manage. In parts 1 through 4, we’ve covered:
- Make the customer work for you
- Let the team manage the budget
- Scale the deliverables
- Manage the meetings
In this final Part 5, we’ll consider the idea of learning along the way on our projects as a way to improve our overall project delivery while it can still make a difference on the current project.
No one does everything perfect on a project – no amount of project management experience is going to allow you deliver a completely trouble-free end solution. There are going to be bumps in the road and there are going to be mistakes made. By the project team, by the customer team, and yes – even by the project manager (*collective gasp*). Everyone should – but few project managers actually do – conduct end of project sessions known as ‘lessons learned’ sessions. These are designed to do exactly what they say…help everyone on both teams share the good and the bad of the project. The idea, of course, is that we take this information away and use it on future projects and share it with our PM colleagues back at the office. That way, going forward we know what made our projects go well and what caused problem. Thus, we can repeat – even improve on – the good and figure out how to eliminate and never repeat the bad. Great concept…but….