Five Project Execution Tips Guaranteed To Improve Your Results

Hold standing meetings so that you can improve accountability and stay abreast of rising issues.

People everywhere continue to debate the efficacy of meetings. Some complain about the time wasted in meetings, and the work that isn’t getting done. Some have set aside meeting-free days or banned them almost entirely. Books have been written on how to make meetings more effective.

Deliver value to the client regularly so that you can quickly learn what works and what doesn’t.

In the planning process, you have hopefully identified the essential activities or work packages so that it’s clear what ‘done’ means. By doing this, teams can deliver smaller amounts of work to the client in shorter time periods. There is a very significant difference in a mindset that says we will finish a project by X date, and a mindset that says we will have a tangible product to review in two or three weeks.

Focus intently on designated activities so that you can deliver a result to the client at the end of each time block.

In traditional Scrum, teams work in sprints on a set of software features that are supposed to be delivered by the end of the sprint. Teams get no credit, so to speak, for unfinished features. This is a different mind-set from what I frequently see in business projects where teams just keep working (and billing time) but don’t ever seem to deliver anything to the client.

Contract workers should update their time sheets daily so that the project manager can monitor the budget.

This is less of a concern when the work is being done on a time and materials basis. When the contract has a fixed price it is essential that everyone is recording time on a daily basis. With multiple people working on the same project, often at sizable hourly rates, a project can fall into the red quickly.

Write effective communications so that readers are clear on what is needed.

This should go without saying, but some of the emails and updates that I’ve seen in my career suggest that effective communications are still badly needed. If you want some tips on how to improve your written communications, check out my blog post on effective written communications.



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