This reflective journal creates the opportunity for you to write about and reflect on your learning during this course and how it connects to the learning outcomes of your course and program. You will be required to reflect on your development as a learner and the connection to your academic and career goals.
“Reflections constitute metacognition and are ways for students to think about their thinking and learning
process. Reflections help students “own” their learning through considering the assignment or experience in an academic and/or personal context.”
There may be some opportunity to practice reflection and journal writing in some classes as part of the Capstone course.
4.Students are able to inform future iterations of the Capstone course.
Expectations as a Project Manager
This project report is mainly focused on the self-reflective views as a project manager and its functionality in an organisation. In this competitive global world, business organisations and companies require a well-organised project management plan for controlling the quality, cost and speed control of a specific project (Kerzner & Kerzner 2017). This has resulted in the hiring of capable project managers who are able to manage and control multiple projects in an organisation simultaneously. A clear idea on how to organise and perform a project effectively should be the first goal of a project manager. Understanding the details about the subject is necessary for building a strategic plan and work according to the designed plan is one of the major duties of a project manager in an organisation. The concepts of project management help to understand the analysis of risks, system efficiency, and design of the system required to carry out the project methods and procedures successfully (Martinelli & Milosevic 2016). The various duties and expectations as a project manager as well as the challenges faced in the process are discussed in this reflective project report.
As a newly appointed project manager, I am required to understand the necessity of collaboration, creativity, and practical implementation, which is very important for innovation. Without a systematic approach for designing the project and working without a management plan would certainly lead to disaster and my failure as a project manager. The first step for working on a project is to build an effective team who can work in a disciplined way towards a unified goal (Aga, Noorderhaven & Vallejo 2016). Communication is required among the team members and as well as with me for the project to be successful. With the help of proper communication and good relationship between the team members and their managers, management strategies can be easily implemented in the project, which is a very important aspect of the project management plan (Harrison & Lock 2017). In fact, the team should be built as soon as possible after the project starts and brainstorming sessions should be held in presence of the project manager to calculate the resources and time required for completion of the project. The company's major expectations from a project manager include arrangement and overseeing the activities inside the project, keep the project up to date with respect to schedule time, control the costs and quality of items, as well as increase the productivity of the team members working under the project manager (Turner 2014). Sometimes, when project managers are not able to select their own team members and generally hired by the executive authorities of the company, it is the duty of the project manager quickly build a relationship with the new members and create a healthy and friendly environment within the workplace to increase the efficiency and productivity of the team. Moreover, using the same team for multiple projects has an added advantage as the team members are already accustomed to each other and can act as a single unit, which is a key factor for increased productivity of the project. In addition, team members are freer and more open to their previously known project manager and can openly discuss problems and struggle faced by them within the workplace. Other than effective communication within the team, the product manager is also expected to control and manage the product development process to check for errors, working delays, and keeping the project schedule in line with the estimated completion period (Hoda & Murugesan 2016). Even brand-new strategies should be implemented by the project manager on the team if in case any project strategy has failed or not worked according to the requirements. On a personal reflective note, as a project manager, I expect full loyalty and attention of my team members towards me and the project they are working on and any query or suggestions should be discussed with me as soon as possible for working out better and effective plan to mitigate any challenges faced.
Challenges and Strategies in Project Management
The plans and methods charted out for a specific project do not always go according to the plan and certain challenges are faced by the team members as well as the project manager during the course of the ongoing project (Binder 2016). As a project manager, I also faced similar situations, as things were not going in the same direction as I expected and rectification methods and alternative strategic plans were required for overcoming those challenges. At the beginning of the project, I thought after I have selected my team everything is supposed to work out in a disciplined fashion as I always maintained a healthy and communicative relationship with my team members and checked on how they interacted with each other for maintaining a work efficient environment in the workplace. However, things always don't turn out according to the plan and a few of my team members started having some disagreement among themselves regarding the working procedure of the project plan which led to egoistic miscommunication among them. This created a ripple effect on the entire team and affected the overall productivity in the progress of the project. As the project has already started, selecting new team members was no longer possible and I had to come up with a better strategic plan for coping with the situation and accelerate the project progress, which was already delayed due to this problem. This is precisely the reason for which I arranged for a series of conferences and meetings on a weekly basis. Here, we collectively tried to resolve the agreement issues by presenting the thoughts from all the members and remove the egoistic nature from the workplace. As a solution method for future disagreement problems, a huge risk was taken by me in which I appointed specific team members as the team leaders by breaking down the team into factions who would work on specific portions of the project only. This was a huge risk considering that the team members had no prior experience as team leaders and could have led to disasters if they had failed to do their job properly. In the end, however, the team leaders got a boost in their morale as being the team leaders and got the job done well within the scheduled time and with proper quality and cost. This is what makes me proud about taking the right decision during the crisis. I feel more confident about handling future crises and implement rectification methods and strategies for becoming a successful project manager.
In this rapidly changing world and with the implementation of more and more automated technologies within the workforce, experts are predicting the future. Thus, a project manager is no longer required by the company for guiding the workforce in the proper direction and only a system administrator and machine operator would be successfully able to take care of multiple machines. We perceive that AIs are better at following orders, doing their jobs more diligently, and efficiently (Serra & Kunc 2015). However, some experts also argue that companies cannot switch to automated technologies completely as creative areas of work will still be required in the company structure. Automated machines and AIs are not very good at jobs, which are creative, and requires continuous adaptations as per the situation. For maintaining a creative workforce, a project manager will still be required for creating management plans and strategies for that creative line of work and controlling the methods and working functionality of the creative employees hired for the job (Marchewka 2014). However, on a personal level, I believe that companies and organisations will always require project manager but they will have to upgrade and adapt in terms of their working areas and methods for coping with the ever-changing technological world and managing certain situations in context to the specific situation and technological advancement required at that time. Utilising cloud-based solutions for project management is an absolute necessity for the future as it provides robust infrastructural tools and high-intensity computation powers within the project management system (Crawford 2014). Moreover, there will be no longer not designated project managers for a specific or main role within the company and project managers must adapt to the roles required for the specific projects ongoing in the companies (Leimbach & Goodall 2017). On a personal level, I focus mainly on leadership qualities for handling crises and need to be much more agile for developing a collaborative ecosystem along with the team members for successfully carrying out a project according to the plan. With this different approach in the future, I am confident about my capabilities to handle job requirement and temperament of my team members under pressure.
This project report on the reflective viewpoint as a project manager is conclusive and encapsulates all the necessary factors and aspects that should be carried out by a project manager. This project report covers all the necessary expectations required from a project manager as well as the challenges faced during an ongoing project and the right way to mitigate or solve them even when under stress and pressure. A project manager should always have a leadership mentality instead of being a boss. A collaborative working environment should be maintained by the project manager with proper communication skills with his employees and team members for successfully carry out a project plan (Nicholas & Steyn 2017). This project assignment also identifies the future problems of a project manager and the way to adapt to the changes to remain competitive in the global market. A unique and different approach towards the working functionality of a project manager is what companies will be in burning need in the near future.
Aga, D.A., Noorderhaven, N. and Vallejo, B., 2016. Transformational leadership and project success: The mediating role of team-building. International Journal of Project Management, 34(5), pp.806-818.
Binder, J., 2016. Global project management: communication, collaboration and management across borders. Routledge.
Crawford, J.K., 2014. Project management maturity model. Auerbach Publications.
Harrison, F. and Lock, D., 2017. Advanced project management: a structured approach. Routledge.
Hoda, R. and Murugesan, L.K., 2016. Multi-level agile project management challenges: A self-organizing team perspective. Journal of Systems and Software, 117, pp.245-257.
Kerzner, H. and Kerzner, H.R., 2017. Project management: a systems approach to planning, scheduling, and controlling. John Wiley & Sons.
Leimbach, T. and Goodall, J.B., 2017. The relation between project management education and newer streams in project management research. In Future of Project Management (pp. 65-74). Roskilde University.
Marchewka, J.T., 2014. Information technology project management. John Wiley & Sons.
Martinelli, R.J. and Milosevic, D.Z., 2016. Project management toolbox: tools and techniques for the practicing project manager. John Wiley & Sons.
Nicholas, J.M. and Steyn, H., 2017. Project management for engineering, business, and technology. Routledge.
Serra, C.E.M. and Kunc, M., 2015. Benefits realisation management and its influence on project success and on the execution of business strategies. International Journal of Project Management, 33(1), pp.53-66.
Turner, J.R., 2014. Handbook of project-based management (Vol. 92). New York, NY: McGraw-hill.