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Key Of Effective And Successful Projects

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Question:

Discuss about the Key of Effective and Successful Projects.
 
 

Answer:

Introduction:

The project management is a philosophical tool that involves a disciplined approach in outlining, designing, communicating, maneuvering, monitoring and regulating the different activities within a project. According to Aga et al. (2016), the project management facilitates the application of skills, knowledge, tools, expertise and techniques that help in meeting the requirements of the project. It is a continuous process, where the project manager has to use various tools for measuring accomplishments and tracking the progress of the project work. Through project management, the project manager and team members become aware of the resources those are necessary for the project completion. This process embraces the effective distribution of work and responsibilities within the organization, which helps in achieving specific goals and objectives of the project. As opined by Andersen (2016), the team members play an important role in development, completion, and success of the project. While managing a project, the manager has to be careful about the objectives, budget, timescale and resources those are necessary for the project. Effective communication between the project manager and team members facilitates in having a clear understanding of the job roles and responsibilities.

Archibald and Archibald (2016) stated that through project management, the risks and complexities that the project is likely to face comes up and hence effective measures of mitigating the risks are taken. The strategies, plans, and objectives are made clear to the team members that help them staying focused towards the tasks.  In this assignment, the researcher will be discussing the roles and responsibilities of the team and team development along with the roles of leadership and communication in the project management. Along with this, the lifecycle of the project management and benefits of project management are discussed in this context.

 

Role of Teams and Team Development in Project Management

The teams and the team members are the integral parts of a project in an organization. Braglia and Frosolini (2014) opined that while developing a project team, the manager had to include the five stages of the team development. In the forming stage, the team members are introduced to one another, and basic information about their interests experience and backgrounds are discussed. Moreover, the objectives, goals, and aims of the project are conveyed to the project team. In the storming stage, the team members confront with one another to establish their ideas and proposals. In this stage, the conflicts arise, and the team leader had to take active participant in resolving these conflicts and distributing the roles and responsibilities to each of them. As stated by Burke (2013), in the norming stage, the team members start working as a team, and they are focused on team goals rather than individual ones. The differences among the team members are sorted out, and each of them respects and values the individual opinions and viewpoints. In the performing stage, the team is focused on the set goals and has gained trust on each other. Eadie et al. (2013) stated that the team members’ work effectively with one another and the team leader monitor the progress of the team and celebrate the achievements for sustaining the team comradeship. The last stage is the adjourning stage, where the team members complete the project and the leader celebrates the success of it with the team members and ensures in storing the benefitted practices for future use.

According to Eubanks et al. (2016), the team members play an important role in the project management by working with one another in a coordinated and cooperative way. The commitment level, experience, expertise, and skills of the team members assure the success of the team. Along with this, the engagement of the team leaders in managing and monitoring the team helps in prevailing positive and sportive workplace environment in the organization. The problem-solving approaches in the team also reduce the chances of occurrence of conflicts at the workplace. Hoda and Murugesan (2016) mentioned that the project managers have to be unbiased in their approach and have to provide timelines to the team members for completing their responsibilities. The aim of the team is to stay aligned with the responsibilities provided to them by the project manager and completion of the work within provided time and resources. The team members have to be competitive and should address the issues in an effective way for solving and mitigating the problems. 

Role of Leadership and Communication in Team Development Process

When a team is formed, the team members come together for accomplishing common goals and objectives of the team. As mentioned by Hwang and Ng (2013), in the team development process, communication plays an important role in building a team and hauling out the best from the team members. Effective communication is carried out through written medians like emails, documents, and blueprint of the projects. These communications consist of the job roles and responsibilities of the team members and have to be transparent and clarified in nature. A two-sided communication is also facilitated at the workplace to invite the suggestions and feedbacks of the team members. Kamoona et al. (2016) stated that the leadership in the team development process helps in overall managing the ongoing activities within the project. It helps in monitoring and resolving conflicts, setting the team members in a right direction and serves to be a good spokesperson. The leader is responsible for specifying the team objectives and conveying it to the members of the team. Moreover, the leaders also have every detail of the operations within the group and also make the team members stay adhered to the rules, regulations, and policies of the project

 

Life Cycle of Project Management

The project management lifecycle consists of a series of activities that is necessary for fulfilling the goals and objectives of a project. The projects may vary in size and complexity, but each of them has a structured lifecycle that helps in the successful accomplishment of a project. The different phases of a project management are the initiation, planning, implementation, execution, evaluation and close down (Kautz et al. 2016). Each of these phases is important and plays a crucial role in the completion of the project. The project is divided into the smaller phases and stages as it helps in managing the steps in a logical and manageable way.

In this phase, the project manager documents the human and other resources those are necessary for the development of the project. Keller (2017) commented that the aims, objectives, purpose, scope, financial benefits and deliverables are documented by the project manager. A complete evaluation of the timeline and budget is done that helps in balancing the project requirements with the available resources. Moreover, the probable risks and hindrances of the project are discussed at this stage. It, therefore, helps the team leader and members in taking appropriate steps for avoiding and reducing its impacts. Kerzner (2013) had opined that in this stage, the technological requirements are discussed those help in aligning the project requirements with the existing resources. Along with this, the legal safeguard that is to be taken is also discussed in this stage for making the project legally safe and protective. In this stage, the project managers reflect their leadership qualities through conveying the project highlights and responsibilities among the team members.

An example can be cited from Wal-Mart, where the organization has launched Parcel innovation project. This project undertaken by Wal-Mart allows customers in tracking their products those brought online (Khedhaouria et al. 2017). In this project, the manager and the teammates have the direct conversation with the customers. The budget, technological requirements and resources are revised to make them ready for serving the customers. The project manager conveyed the idea and distributed the responsibilities among the teammates.

Project Planning Stage

In this stage, complete scheduling and arranging of the requirements of the project are done precisely. As mentioned by Kloppenborg et al. (2014), in this stage, the entire work is broken down into small tasks as it facilitates the project manager in the easy management of the project. The responsibilities are officially distributed among the teammates, and effective communication medium is used for communicating with the members of the team. A tracking system is also initiated in this process that helps in monitoring each of the upcoming stages of the project lifecycle. It is a dynamic stage, where the deliverables are identified, and activities are completed logically following a planned sequence of work. According to Lakemond et al. (2016), in this stage, the allocations of the resources are done in a methodical and systemic way that facilitates the project manager and teammates in the completion of the project. In this stage, the purposes and objects of the projects are clarified and conveyed to the teammates and feedbacks are collected for making changes to the project. 

In the project undertaken by Wal-Mart, the planning stage is an essential phase where the project managers have conveyed the purpose of the project to the teammates. The teammates are responsible for designing the innovative tracking and monitoring structures that will facilitate the customers in tracking their online orders from ordering to reaching the destinations Liu and Wang (2016). They are also responsible for providing a unique experience to the customers through this tracking and monitoring of their online-ordered products. In this stage, the responsibilities and tasks of the teammates are distributed by the project manager.

In the 3rd stage of the project management lifecycle, the deliverables are built physically and are presented to the patrons for their acceptance. Liu (2016) stated that after each of the deliverables is constructed; monitoring and controlling of these deliverables are followed in this phase. The teammates are involved in the completion of their work and responsibilities and inform the project manager about the completion of their deliverables. The project manager schedules the project and updates the customers and stakeholders about the task assignments. This is followed by the execution of the deliverables by the project manager to the customers. As mentioned by Martinelli and Milosevic (2016), the project manager is responsible for monitoring the entire project and making the changes simultaneously whenever required. Every progresses made in the projects are measured and circulated among the team members of the project, and corrective actions are taken as such. These modifications are also recorded and published to the plan on a regular basis. An example of Wal-Mart is taken, wherein the implementation phase, the several meetings are held for updating the status of the project that is undertaken. Before launching the personalized scheme into the market, the online availability, market surveys, manufacturing costs and sales cost and quantity are tested and updated in the meetings (Mir and Pinnington, 2014).

 

Project Closedown and Evaluation Stage

In this stage, the on-going project gets closed, and the final deliverable is released to the customers. As stated by Park and Lee (2014), the project documentation is handled over to the customer, and the supplier contracts are terminated. The project resources are released, and project closure is communicated to the stakeholders. The experiences and wisdom are stored by the project manager that will help in the completion of the future projects undertaken by the organization. Schaubroeck et al. (2016) mentioned that in this stage a final budget of the project is prepared that contains the project documents and deliverables. In this stage, the project manager assembles the small project works those are distributed among the teammates for the formulation of the complete project. A complete post-mortem of the project is done before handing over to the customer to prevent the mistakes in the future project. After the project gets closed down, a spreadsheet or Smartsheet is made with the Gantt chart. Consequently, it helps in documenting the project details like its requirements, timelines and official papers those were necessary for successful completion of the project (Shao et al. 2016).

An example can be taken from Wal-Mart where the organization in this stage will be launching the service of “tracking online parcels” into the market. It will collect the feedback from the customers and will also be bridging the gaps between the customers and the organization while they order online. This parcel innovation service “ToYou” is handled over to Wal-Mart by the vendor (Too and Weaver, 2014).

While the project manager handles the multiple projects, he/she has to be careful about the individual goals of the multiple projects and completion of each of these projects within scheduled time. As mentioned by Vijayasarathy and Butler (2016), the project manager has to understand the potentiality and expertise levels of the team members in handling multiple projects. The initial meetings regarding the projects’ requirements are discussed, which helps in completion of the project within specified time and resources. The project manager is responsible for splitting the tasks into smaller groups. It, therefore, helps in completion of the different stages within the given time and the provided resources. Andersen (2016) commented that the project manager has to be cautious enough for the handling of multiple projects. The essentialities of each of the projects are documented separately to avoid mixing of them. Moreover, the project manager is also responsible for tracking and monitoring of each of the projects individually till their completion.  A proper breakdown of the projects helps in systematic completion of the individual projects. 

Benefits of Project Management

The project management is useful as it helps the businesses in realizing the benefits and importance of having communication and coordination across the different departments of the organization. As mentioned by Burke (2013), the project management is beneficial to the stakeholders, team members, functional managers and senior managers of the organizations. As a result, it provides significant benefits to the stakeholders through better budgeting and scheduling of the activities. The project mapping and reporting of the progress to the stakeholders are done through effective communication. Consequently, through project management, the quality assurance planning, processes and acceptance steps are conveyed to the stakeholders of the project. Hoda and Murugesan (2016) opined that effective project management helps in benefitting the team members through efficient distribution of responsibilities and work among them. It facilitates less incoming of reworks and also improves the productivity of the team members. Moreover, it also facilitates creativity in the team that also provides focus to several activities within the project. It, therefore, results in aligning the talents with the passions, which leads to the better understanding of the responsibilities of roles of the team members leading to the success of the project.

The functional managers are also benefitted from the project management through the effective project management. Keller (2017) stated that project management helps in better allocation of the resources and efficient communication throughout the organization. It, therefore, results in improvement in work instructions, staff retention, utilization of effective tools and practices and receiving quality output from the project. The senior managers are also benefitted from the project management through best utilization of the resources as well as it also helps in better monitoring and control of the project. As a result, the senior managers can provide attention to the probable risks that the project is likely to face and provide effective solutions for mitigating those risks (Mir and Pinnington, 2014).

 

Conclusion

It is seen in this assignment that project management is one of the effective methods used in delivering products and services within the estimated schedule, cost and resource constraints. In this context, the researcher has discussed the project management and the benefits of it in the organization. It is seen that through project management, the senior managers, functional managers, stakeholders and team members are benefitted. Moreover, this assignment also discusses the role of the team members and development of the teams in the project management of an organization. The life-cycle of the project management is also conferred in this context, which discusses the initiation, planning, implementation, execution, closing down and evaluation stages of the project. Each of these stages has unique features and characteristics, and their individual contribution is important for management of the project successfully. These stages are discussed with the several examples from the companies those have adopted projects. It is seen that the management of the projects is done for the successful accomplishment of the projects undertaken within the specified time, budget and resources. Through project management, the overall aims, purposes and objectives of the organizational projects are accomplished.

 

References

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.

Andersen, E.S., 2016. Do project managers have different perspectives on project management?. International Journal of Project Management, 34(1), pp.58-65.

Archibald, R.D. and Archibald, S., 2016. Leading and Managing Innovation: What Every Executive Team Must Know about Project, Program, and Portfolio Management. CRC Press.

Braglia, M. and Frosolini, M., 2014. An integrated approach to implement project management information systems within the extended enterprise. International Journal of Project Management, 32(1), pp.18-29.

Burke, R., 2013. Project management: planning and control techniques. New Jersey, USA.

Eadie, R., Browne, M., Odeyinka, H., McKeown, C. and McNiff, S., 2013. BIM implementation throughout the UK construction project lifecycle: An analysis. Automation in Construction, 36, pp.145-151.

Eubanks, D.L., Palanski, M., Olabisi, J., Joinson, A. and Dove, J., 2016. Team dynamics in virtual, partially distributed teams: optimal role fulfillment. Computers in Human Behavior, 61, pp.556-568.

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.

Hwang, B.G. and Ng, W.J., 2013. Project management knowledge and skills for green construction: Overcoming challenges. International Journal of Project Management, 31(2), pp.272-284.

Kamoona, K.R.K., AlHares, E.F.T. and Isik, Z., 2016. Decision Making during the Project Management Life Cycle of Infrastructure Projects. Decision Making, 1, p.10005599.

Kautz, K., Johansen, T.H. and Uldahl, A., 2016. The Perceived Impact of the Agile Development and Project Management Method Scrum on Team Leadership in Information Systems Development. In Transforming Healthcare Through Information Systems (pp. 167-183). Springer International Publishing.

Keller, R.T., 2017. A longitudinal study of the individual characteristics of effective R&D project team leaders. R&D Management.

Kerzner, H., 2013. Project management: a systems approach to planning, scheduling, and controlling. John Wiley & Sons.

Khedhaouria, A., Montani, F. and Thurik, R., 2017. Time pressure and team member creativity within R&D projects: The role of learning orientation and knowledge sourcing. International Journal of Project Management, 35(6), pp.942-954.

Kloppenborg, T.J., Tesch, D. and Manolis, C., 2014. Project success and executive sponsor behaviors: Empirical life cycle stage investigations. Project Management Journal, 45(1), pp.9-20.

Lakemond, N., Bengtsson, L., Laursen, K. and Tell, F., 2016. Match and manage: the use of knowledge matching and project management to integrate knowledge in collaborative inbound open innovation. Industrial and Corporate Change, 25(2), pp.333-352.

Liu, S. and Wang, L., 2016. Influence of managerial control on performance in medical information system projects: the moderating role of organizational environment and team risks. International Journal of Project Management, 34(1), pp.102-116.

Liu, S., 2016. How the user liaison's understanding of development processes moderates the effects of user-related and project management risks on IT project performance. Information & Management, 53(1), pp.122-134.

Martinelli, R.J. and Milosevic, D.Z., 2016. Project management toolbox: tools and techniques for the practicing project manager. John Wiley & Sons.

Mir, F.A. and Pinnington, A.H., 2014. Exploring the value of project management: linking project management performance and project success. International Journal of Project Management, 32(2), pp.202-217.

Park, J.G. and Lee, J., 2014. Knowledge sharing in information systems development projects: Explicating the role of dependence and trust. International Journal of Project Management, 32(1), pp.153-165.

Schaubroeck, J., Carmeli, A., Bhatia, S. and Paz, E., 2016. Enabling team learning when members are prone to contentious communication: The role of team leader coaching. human relations, p.0018726715622673.

Shao, Z., Feng, Y. and Hu, Q., 2016. Effectiveness of top management support in enterprise systems success: a contingency perspective of fit between leadership style and system life-cycle. European Journal of Information Systems, 25(2), pp.131-153.

Too, E.G. and Weaver, P., 2014. The management of project management: A conceptual framework for project governance. International Journal of Project Management, 32(8), pp.1382-1394.

Vijayasarathy, L.R. and Butler, C.W., 2016. Choice of Software Development Methodologies: Do Organizational, Project, and Team Characteristics Matter?. IEEE Software, 33(5), pp.86-94.

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