Being a new project manager can be daunting. There are plenty of things to consider, here are just some of the mistakes you need to avoid.
The job of the project manager is not as simple as you might think. There are so many things that can be going on simultaneously and so many people to consider that it is little wonder that mistakes are made. While this isn’t necessarily the death blow to your future career in project management, there are lessons that can be learnt from each mistake that will make you stronger on your future projects.
We have put together a list of some of those common mistakes that new project managers need to try and avoid.
Too wide a scope
It can be exciting being in charge of a big project, but it can be all too easy to take on more than you are capable of. It is really important when you sit down to look at all the work that will be involved in the project that you allow for “mushrooming”. This is something that tends to happen with big projects. It is very easy for a large project to get out of control very quickly. Break a large project down to smaller parts and then take each smaller goal one step at a time. This should really help you to achieve success with your project
Don’t rush a deadline
Another mistake that new project managers make is committing to a deadline that is too tight. It is imperative that you make allowances for any potential delays that you meet along the way. There is always the possibility that you can, in fact, complete a project in the tight time period set but this is rare. Especially in the case of a project that involves a large number of people and is long and/or complex. In these circumstances, there is more chance that something that will set you back. Factor in plenty of time to allow for these unexpected setbacks.
You are a team
As a new project manager, it can be tempting to try and impress by taking on a large amount of the work. If you are doing this, then it would be wise to stop. This is not a good idea and is liable to end badly. You have a project team for a reason. They have skills and expertise, and you really do need to use them to help your project along to its best outcome. Make sure that you know precisely where the strengths and weaknesses in your team lie and use them to their fullest advantage. This is excellent project management and will ensure that your project has the best chance of succeeding and as close to your deadlines as possible.
You are still in charge of the team, so ensure that you don’t just sit back and watch them, lead from the front, give direction, resolve issues, keep lines of communication open. And, above all, monitor progress and your project should run smoothly.