Guest Post by Jonathan Tavarez (@jon_tavarez)
What is Project Management?
Project management is the process of planning, organizing and applying knowledge to execute projects effectively. Project management steps can range from simple to complex, depending on the desired outcome of the project. Primary purposes for managing projects include completing the project in the desired time, creating quality work, and achieving all project goals. The concept of project management is very important across many disciplines, from making a volcano for a middle school science fair, to mapping the Human Genome.
History of Project Management
Humans have been carrying out project plans for thousands of years. The management and completion of projects have resulted in some of the greatest architectural and scientific creations known to man. Many great architectural projects were driven by religious, political, or commercial factors, similar to the reasons we build structures today. An example is the Parthenon temple in Athens, Greece, which was created for the Greek goddess Athena. Before building the temple, careful planning and consideration was taken into account. How much time will it take? What resources will be used? What is our primary goal? It would have been impossible to complete such a structure without the use of project management.
Project Management Today
Todays’ project management isn’t as different as it was back in ancient Greece. The same fundamental principles still hold true, but there are some advantages available to make things easier for you. Besides, most people try to accomplish goals much sooner than 9 years (how long it took to build the Parthenon). The use of modern technology can definitely help with achieving goals in a timely manner. Common tools nearly anyone can use to manage projects are online planners, calendars, task management applications, and a few other options. Some of these great apps include Nozbe, HiTask, and Firetask which are online task management applications that are very useful with time management and project planning. What makes these apps so special is that they provide features useful for professionals, such as Google Calendar synchronization, recording time spent on projects and drag-and-drop file sharing. Many of these to do list apps allow access from your computer as well as on iPhone, iPad, and Android devices.
Tips for Effective Project Management
Have a big project coming up and stressed out about where to begin? Here are a few useful tips with planning your next project.
Make all details and limits in your project clear. Keep in mind the amount of time you expect to spend on the project, how much you are able to spend, etc. Nothing is worse than getting to the end of a project and realizing that a minor detail left out will ruin all your hard work.
Organize and manage your team effectively. The best way to do this is with the help of a task management application. There are some great options available on the web and it may take some time figuring out which one will meet your needs.
Make sure communication with your team is constant. Know what they have completed, any problems they run into, so you will know when to move forward or when to change plans.
Keep records. For businesses, this is an obvious fact to keep documentation of the individuals you do business with. Not only for legal purposes, but also so nothing in the project is misplaced or forgotten.
Evaluate your effectiveness at the end of the project. What should change? What should stay the same? This way, your next project can become an even better success.
More Advice on Project Management
There are numerous resources on the web to help with project management and planning. Knowing how to manage projects and reading how others manage their teams can help project managers improve their techniques for the success of their projects.
About Jonathan Tavarez
Jonathan is a digital media specialist based out of Tampa, Florida which enjoys writing about Productivity, Marketing, and Business. He is also involved in numerous start-up companies which depend on systems in order to function and get things done.