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The Secrets To Managing A Small Project

No matter how much project management training you have had, nothing can prepare you for the unique challenges a small project can bring. As they are smaller, many project managers skip the prep and jump straight into getting the work done. And this tends to happen regularly when projects are similar to other projects in the past. Because of this tendency to avoid proper planning, important processes are often neglected, which can lead to some pretty serious mistakes. Quite simply if you don’t put the effort into planning a small project like you would a larger one, you’ll end up in a lot of trouble at some point.
One key reason that standard processes and techniques can be ignored on smaller projects is because project management training tends to focus on the project management framework and formulas that are best applied to larger projects. Essentially, a lot of methodologies simply cannot be fully applied to smaller projects because many of the procedures are unnecessary; they would over-complicate the tasks and simply add to the administrative burden. But that doesn’t mean the smaller project doesn’t need a framework and some processes, it just means it needs one that works with its size.
So what are the key problems encountered with smaller projects?
There are a whole range of key problems encountered with smaller projects such as;
? Having the motivation and focus to put the required amount of energy and enthusiasm into the project, and to monitor and control it with the same degree of accuracy that you would a larger project.
? Having the motivation to keep to the defined project plan once you have applied it to your smaller project; changes in small projects can have relatively smaller impact so there is a temptation to make uncontrolled changes.
? Struggling with the fact that not much time is given for you to plan the project.
? Struggling with the motivation to put everything into the smaller project because the win simply isn’t that big.
So What Are The Secrets To Managing A Small Project?
Designating Effectively
It is important that once a smaller project has been assigned, roles and responsibilities within that project are designated effectively. Sometimes project managers simply don’t want to take on smaller projects because they have larger projects to work on. Providing working incentives to encourage project managers to invest their time in smaller projects, and providing key reasons these projects are important to the business will do this. Often smaller projects won’t even have a team assigned to them, but if they do it is important that team is given designated tasks and job roles to work to and most importantly, they understand why that project is important.
Planning Effectively
Planning is incredibly important no matter what size the project is. By always planning a project big or small, you execute best project management practises. Project management training offers excellent methodology learning, and it is possible to apply those frameworks and methodologies to any size project, it just takes a little time and creative thinking. The project must be sanctioned, scope definition must be applied, scheduling and estimating must be done.
Executing Effectively
Once the project has been planned the project needs to be executed with passion and determination. Status reporting must take place and the milestones must be reached. It is also important that the project is closed properly, so it can be seen as an accomplishment.
The key to managing a small project effectively is to insist on planning, adapting a framework to suit the size, and applying the same determination and motivation you would if it was a larger project.

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