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Plan for Success as a Project Manager

Starting up in a new company as a project manager? Just starting off as a project manager on your first large initiative? Taking over a failed project? You have some challenges ahead! Too often project managers new to the role, the project or the company forget to pause and consider what’s ahead and plan effectively for the challenges. They charge ahead to get it done and to show their new employer that they know how to manage projects. Stop! Wait! Plan first! This will help you to be a more successful new project manager.

Consider these best practices when you move into a new project manager role:

Get to know:

  • The project team
  • The project sponsor
  • The stakeholders

The more you know about them and the stronger your relationships with them; the more likely you can get what you need to accomplish the project objectives.

Learn about:

  • Past projects done – successful or not?
  • Long term strategy for the company
  • What each business unit/department does, their long term goals and their challenges
  • Lessons learned from past projects (even if not captured and stored, ask the other project managers – they’ll have information to share!)

If you are taking over a troubled project, spend some time understanding what went wrong and how it went wrong. Ask the sponsor, stakeholders and team members their opinions. The more you know, the better you can turn the situation around.

What about you? What have you done to be successful when you have moved into a new role – whether as a project manager or another position? Please share in the Comments field below. Thanks!

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