When managing a project, there are several factors that project managers must consider that will ensure a successful project. The steps will help assemble, develop and manage a project team. In addition, planning allows for smother execution and addresses how managers can evaluate the progress and performance during the project. American Bank of Indiana (ABI) has recently acquired First America Financial Service Group (FAFS), this acquisition will require the project manager to structure a project that will widen the bank’s portfolio as well as implement the latest technologies.
Assembling a project teams takes thought and consideration. Since the success of the project depends on the engagement of the members of the team, the assembly is a vital part of project management. Putting together a good project team is no easy task. The goal is to make sure, from beginning to end, that the project runs as smooth as possible. Getting the assembly wrong could cost time, money and result in a failed project.
Due to the uniqueness of the acquisition between establishing a core team to complete the project would ensure speed.
Core project team members are experienced professionals, which means team members would devote their time and undivided attention to the project (Gray & Larson). Assembling a team with core member can also decrease risk and ensure that projects are completed on time. Another thing to consider is the latest technologies that have been adopted by ABI. It’s vital that this investment remains intact throughout the acquisitions. The core team, based on professional experience, can develop a project that will utilize this technology and maintain ABI’s position as a leading player among regional bank.
Once core team leaders are selected they will be given the opportunity to select individuals to help complete the makeup of their teams. Core member will be responsible for the development of their team based on the need of their specific portion of the project. Before the project begins, leaders will be responsible for identifying each team member’s professional goals and what ways they can be motivated to enhance performance. Once motivational tools have been identified, project manager will roll out the project with a kick off that will get the team excited about the beginning phase of the project.
In addition, project leader will have weekly meeting with team member to maintain an open flow of communication throughout each phase of the project. This communication will ensure that team members are updated on any changes and will also allow them to interact with other team members. Another factor that will contribute to the development of the team is clear goals accompanied with a completion time line. Once the team has moved from getting to know each other their focus will begin to move towards getting the goal accomplished (Gray & Larson, 2008).
This focus will create a higher-level of performance amongst team members especially when rewards and incentives have been implemented. In addition to rewards, team managers will make sure that each team member is adequately train to perform their job function. Job training gives the team members the confidence and skills needed required to perform their perspective duties. After the teams have been assembled and developed, managing the project now because the focus. In order to ensure the highest performance from project managers must maintain their involvement in the projects from beginning to end.
Project managers play a key role in developing a high-performance team. They recruit members, conduct meetings, establish indemnity, create a common sense of purpose or a shared vision, manage reward systems that encourage team work, orchestrate decision making, resolve conflict that emerge within the team, and rejuvenate the team when energy wanes (Gray & Larson, 2008). Managing this process also gives the better knowledge of the challenges as well as the successes of the project. Project managers will also conduct plan meetings for the team.
These meetings will establish rules and update on the progress during each phase of the project. Another important factor in the project management process is the execustion phase. Project execution phase refers managing the individual work components that is required to advance the process of the project development. The goal of managing a projects execution is to guide the project to the ultimate goal (www. project-management-knowledge. com). Since the execution phase is directly related to the success of the project, developing a contingency plan can prepare the project for any unforeseeable obstacles.
According to Lewwongcharoen and Milosevic, a contingency plan has a positive impact on the outcome of a project. When a contingency plan is prepared, project managers can handle the anticipated changes that occur in the later stages of the project life cycle (Lewwongcharoen & Milosevic, 2010). The banking industry is predictably unpredictable, project managers must be able to adapt to any changes that many occur throughout the course of the project. Tracking the progress and performance evaluation is another important measure of project management.
One of the major goals of progress reporting is to catch any negative variances from plan as early as possible to determine if corrective action is necessary (Gray & Larson, 2008). Control chart is a method frequently used to monitor a projects progress. When progress charts are used, managers are able to mark milestones. Mangers can also identify key points within a project and use these points to support an action to keep the project on the right path. Once manages has stabled how the progress of the project will be evaluated, they can then determine performance evaluation.
Before performance can be evaluated, managers must have communicated performance standards. The best way to measure the performance of a project is to do so against the plan of the organization. One method that can be used is a work breakdown structure (WBS). A work breakdown structure is the cornerstone of every program because it defines in detail the work necessary to accomplish a project objective (GAO Reports, 2009). Not only will a WBS clearly define the goals of the project but it also is a great tool for measuring performance.
Each phase of the project is as equally as important as the next. Another vital factor to consider is the project leadership and the importance of having a sponsor. Project leadership is important because it involves recognizing and articulating the need to significantly alter the direction and operation of the project, aligning people to the new direction, and motivating them to work together to overcome hurdles produced by the change and to realize new objectives (Gray & Larson, 2008).
There are consistent changes that arise when completing a project. What’s special about leadership is that when these changes occur, leaders are able to align the team in the new direction of the project. Without this alignment, a change in direction could cause the team to split into spate direction was well. Some people deal well with change, those individual show signs of strong leadership and would be an asset to the project goals. Project sponsor also contribute greatly to the success of the project.
Project sponsors champion the project and use their influence to gain approval of the project (Gray & Larson, 2008). Like leaders, sponsors are able to rally individual behind the final goal of the project. Sponsors are simultaneously involved with juggling multiple needs of stakeholders and user groups, departmental procedures, and government edicts while continually dealing with a legacy of mistrust and adversarial contracts (Kloppenborg, Manolis & Tesch, 2009).
Managing a project and its risk is a big deal. There are many factors that project managers must consider once the organization has decided to take on a new project. Teams must be assembled, goals must be determined and risk must be evaluated. When done correctly the end result is not only a successful project but also a motivated team.