In this video brought to you by Project Smart, I talk about the importance of risk management, discuss tools and common risk management mistakes.
What do you do when a customer complains about something on the project? Are you abrasive? Defensive? Apologetic? No matter what happens, no matter whose fault it is, we should always be apologetic. Not that the customer is always right, but if they are upset at all then we need to be concerned. Twice I did not take my own advice and I lost my clients over it. Lesson learned.
But let’s go further. Let’s listen carefully. What are they complaining about? I’ve changed my way of thinking. In reality, complaints are opportunities. Either for us to improve our service and possibly create some new avenues with that client, or the basis of the complaint may a need the customer has that they do not yet recognize as a need…they are just expressing it now as a frustration…a complaint. Listen well…and then act…
You’re a marketing manager in the creative management industry. What skills do you need to do your job well? To be effective for your organization, to lead your teams, to successfully deliver for your clients or your own organization? Current marketing managers should be thinking in terms of the following list of broad-based skills that can be applied to different scenarios, in different industries, and for companies varying in size from small startups and mom and pop shops to large Fortune 500 organizations.
Marketing managers need analytical skills
Successful marketing managers have analytical minds. They know the value of the vast amount of data available today, and are highly interested in what that data can reveal about consumer behavior, efficacy of various marketing approaches and more. The best managers also know how to look beyond the data and pick up on trends and patterns that can lead to better, more successful marketing efforts...
You know that new car smell or how a new romantic relationship feels? Ok, that may be a little over the top in trying to equate that to the feeling of a fresh new project, but it gets you close. Everything is new. Everything is perfect. Everything is fresh. The team has not experienced any conflicts. Hopefully the customer isn’t complaining about anything yet. Senior management isn’t wondering why you haven’t delivered that big billable deliverable yet so they can have the revenue in ‘x’ quarter.
Yes…everything is fresh, optimistic, promising, and on track. Yeah! No budget issues, no project timeline issues, no issues whatsoever! No one has complained…as far as you know requirements are in place and ready for work to start. Let’s go!...
In this next installment of my popular “5 Reasons Why…” software and services overview series, I am looking at 5 Reasons Why you should check out OneDesk for your Help Desk, Product Management and Project Management needs. I’ve looked this software over a bit and had conversations with the people behind the offerings and I’ve been very impressed with the overall functionality of this software as it pertains to the enterprise and how complete it’s capabilities are. Are you looking for one PM, product and customer service option for your IT services? This is likely it…and here’s 5 reasons why…
Traditional (waterfall) Project Management meets Agile
Connection to the Customer Base
Highly Configurable Workflow Options
Stay connected and aligned with business goals
Ready to check it out for yourself?
Have I peaked your interest? You need to look into this one in more detail – trust me. Check out the OneDesk homepage and then signup for a demo and see for yourself.
Profitability on our projects is always a goal – especially as our senior management looks at our portfolio of projects. And there is probably no greater factor into that profitability than our own human resources that are charging to our projects. So, in terms of technical projects…one thing that many organizations consider is who to utilize when developing software on a project. Do we use in-house resources (if we even have in-house resources…depending on the organization type, of course)? Do we outsource it locally or nationwide? Or do we utilize inexpensive offshore development resources?
It is that last option – the offshore team – that I want to focus on for this article. Not about whether we should use them or not…that’s a call each organization has to make. My focus is more on what the project manager needs to be considering and focusing on once you’ve already made that choice to go offshore. I’ve been there, and for me it comes down to five key things to look at and consider or incorporate into the project….
Now is our chance. Yes...our turn to complain. Think hard. When you're managing a project, what things really grind your gears? What bothers you and makes you want to blow your top? What behaviors or actions, questions or issues show up and really drive you crazy? Think hard now...this is your chance to gripe about them.
Well, keep thinking and I will share my personal top 5 (in no particular order)...
As a client, Do the programs and tools they use have the flexibility to be customized to your needs?
This year, McBru has committed to implementing the only software made exclusively for creative agencies. It’s called Workamajig. The name is kind of perfect, because you can’t really call it a project management software, or an accounting program, or a collaboration tool—because it’s all of that, and more...
Yes, I am drinking a Surge soda right now as I type this. That may not be big news to some of you, but in our family – and specifically to two of my sons – it is a huge thing. Surge soda and its disappearance is sort of like the original Coca-Cola, only on a smaller scale. Surge was created by Coca-Cola in 1996 to compete with Pepsi’s Mountain Dew. But since we all know that Mt. Dew is the best soft drink ever, Coca-Cola realized that it wasn’t possible for it to win out over Mt. Dew and they chose to discontinue Surge in 2003. Many faithfuls – including my 2nd son who was 14 at the time – begged for it to come back. Coca-Cola tried Vault soda as a replacement and it was closer to Mt. Dew, but still not enough competition and it eventually disappeared as well...
It is never fun to make changes, especially amidst a big project, but at times change is necessary. There might be personnel who are not working out, or the scope might be wrong or ill-defined, or perhaps the schedule needs to be overhauled; all of these things and others can cause changes on the project. There is always a chance that the change will be disruptive for the project and the project team, so changing anything on a project just for the sake of change is never a good idea. Leaders should consider the issue from every angle and solicit input from all concerned parties before they can even decide if a change is warranted. If change is indeed necessary for the project, then the following checklist will help ensure that all bases are covered as the project manager implements the change(s)...