Project Communication

I will on track. Hello, and welcome to all project managers, not pmps. My name is Sergei roschin. I am a certified recovering project manager. And this is my advanced project management course we are in implementation now. And I hear that all your projects are running like clockwork. Sounds like? Well, here’s some good news for you. Price Waterhouse Coopers recently had a survey of over 10,000 projects. And they discovered that on the tiny portion of them, just two and a half percent completed 100% of their project successfully. So you are with the majority. But isn’t it great to be within the two and a half percent. You are a few minutes away from an open secret that they will share with you. In fact, most of your problems that you encountered during the project and especially during the implementation phase when the major part of the project value is created. They all related to one word, leadership. No me please not The L Word not in this class. Stay with me, I will let you know. And I will share with you this open secret that will take you back on track and bring you very close to success or maybe within the two and a half percent of successful projects. If I were a motivational speaker, I will tell you at this stage that after careful planning based on realistic estimates and optimized activities, your implementation phase will run like this to your promotional video. But I’m not a motivational speaker. I am a certified recovering project manager. And I’m here to tell you the truth, although it is not computer generated. But the creation of this promotional video took several years were off a few months of just shooting the video. And with a continuous help from scientists from NASA. I doubt that many of your projects have this luxury. And it is quite possible that once in a while something in your project will not go the way you planned in less than five, we have already covered the top three reasons why projects fail. But they will go to the next item on the list. And there are three more items that we will cover. And none of the items in the top 10 I would say are related to technology methodology for tools, but they’re all related to how people work together in a team. Some of them we have addressed which is requirements, requirements requirements, you remember them and another one is top management support. Next on the list is poor communication, internal and external, poorly defined objectives, changing priorities, and the result in scope, creep, and inadequate risk assessment and management. The point is that all of them can be rolled up into one single problem, communication. And that’s the word that we will use mostly today. Surprised? You will be more surprised when you apply what you will have learned today and see how your project starts doing better immediately. I mean, right after this meeting, on condition, of course, that you deploy them. Communications is the single most important element of efficiency and success in management. And meetings are the most obvious part of business communication. And still the most important one. I can see those eyes rolling dangerously up. But listen to this meetings to managers are as important as surgeries to surgeons. Meetings are your core communication channel. When the communication is unobstructed and clear your team becomes better align. The team trust is established and maintained. Setting up the stage for creative ideas, cooperation, commitment, and accountability. And this are the necessary sequential steps on the way to success project or business in general. And it all starts with your meetings. As project manager I had gone through this stage many, many times and probably you too. You announce to the new team that you are going to have a project meeting and you immediately get almost unanimous pushback were too big We have nothing to talk about yet. Or we’re talking about our project all day long. Anyways, if you structure your meetings properly, you will have something to talk about already at the first project meeting. And all this subsequent project meetings will be sold out, perhaps to full house. You have to just do it right. So let’s get started. If you are managing a project, right, your project communication management plan. Like the project charter, mentioned in lesson five, it’s another document that is traditionally neglected, if not outright rejected. By busy managers, no time. But skimping on prep work is not cutting costs, it’s cutting corners that can lead to a disaster. And it will if you fail to plan you are planning to fail. This is a million dollar quote. No wonder the guy’s portrait Isn’t that 100? Franklin? Right. Not president though. But he was an extremely bright and well rounded person. And a great communicator to exactly like real project managers are the communication plan or its cousin. Meeting matrix for non project environment may be a one page document a one page table that contains all the meetings that you normally regularly have, and where your team participates with respective objectives, owners and participants. The value of communication management plan is twofold. First of all, it’s a communication to the entire team is informed what information will be presented and well, but not less important is the process of the creation of this document. During the process, the project manager and the entire team will see that quite often some content is duplicated, and some content is missing. So the meetings are not effective already by design, and already have this process of the communication plan creation may save you hundreds of man hours, thus making the return of this minor investment into this one page document sky high. The plan contains several levels of meetings happening usually with various frequency, daily shift meetings and handlers, weekly team meetings monthly business updates and soul also listed on the same page at newsletters, mass emails sent to the team instead of meetings when the sole purpose of the meeting is informing the team about status or anything else. That you placing some meetings with email is not a new idea. But it always requires a nudge to stop and think about the saving opportunity. And creating a communication management plan provides you the necessary nudge. I haven’t mentioned any of the Agile meetings, but it’s entirely up to you. In my mind, I see them just like another level of pm two dot zero meetings. Having and running meetings is an essential part of management. The actual problem is not in the quantity of meetings but in their quality. That is why the time is wasted in meetings because they do not bring the expected results in their number and length continues to grow. Here is how you maintain the quality of your meeting, measure and monitor the quality with the help of a very simple to actually another one page table. You can find an example on the collective.com site. But other than that, the idea is you select three to five top level criteria, things that really impact the quality and the result of your meeting and add another total of 15 perhaps 15 smaller items that roll up into the top level three to five, so that the total points will amount to 100 to make it easy and include their things like room readiness, punctuality mutual respect meetings, and so on and so on. You may add or remove them eventually, depending on the specifics of your team, but keep the total scored 100 so that it’s easy to calculate and compare, after every meeting, assess the quality with a team or with your at least co chairs and grab the process over time and haven’t done this exercise, just a few meetings, you will be impressed with a change and with a positive result. This mmm to that you will find on collectible.com is yet another tool for you Good to have, with a return on investment that would probably make any business proud because it costs you nothing. Now another pro tip for you how to run effective meetings. First of all, treat your meeting as a micro project using the Pm 2.0 approach. Your meeting will consist of preparation, optimization, teamwork, and lessons learned. So you start with good planning prep work, you have your agenda, you have the space, or zoom channel prepared, you have a notice sample, the participants are an invitation, you have all the documentation that is necessary, distributed before the meeting at least 24 hours before the meeting. And above all, of course, when you start the meeting, you declare the purpose and the expected outcome of this meeting. Then the optimization phase is you clarify the agenda. And you improve the agenda before you run the meeting. Taking in the feedback you receive all the additions you receive from your team right at the meeting. So that each participant will be able to contribute and become part of this all meaning. Teamwork is a key. It is important but it’s crucially important. You need to establish and maintain trust in your team and of course throughout the meeting. and establish a respectful collegial discussion with well prepared and meaningful reports. And without any visitors to your meeting, which means people who come to your meeting, stay there and never contribute and never have any responsibility or any information to share. And finally, monitor the quality of your meetings, learn. assess the quality of your meeting, as soon as you finish the gym. Do it with your team, persist and persevere. And the team will accept and follow you document the score and make it available to the entire team. Good or bad. And yes, there’s one more thing. Whatever is your meeting matrix, no meeting should ever be longer than one hour. Yes, I understand. There will be some meetings maybe two three hours long. But they will special meetings planned as long meetings, prepared as long meetings and conducted as long meetings and they will be more of an exception than a rule. After a few meetings, just a few meetings that are prepared and run with the help of such a tool like Mmm, you will see your meetings becoming up to 50% shorter, but more effective and efficient, because they will generate more meaningful actions. And the actions will be assigned to very clear individuals and people leaving your meetings will feel involved and engaged. meetings to managers are like surgeries to surgeons that we already know. But a little bit more counterintuitive is the fact that actually meetings save time to everybody to team leads and to the entire team. Because when they are well structured, there is less need for ad hoc meetings. That’s leaving more time in between meetings for the team to actually deliver the project. For the manager in particular there are three important things that materializing only in the meeting environment, and they when it doesn’t have individual face to face meetings with team members will not do the same because the following things materialize at the team meeting first of all action items are assigned, accepted and monitored in In a clearer way, second accountability goes up, because individual team members have more problems coming up with a stupid reason why this or that action has not been delivered in front of the team. In simple words, it is next to impossible to bullshit to your team lead in front of your peers. And finally, peer pressure is much stronger in the team meeting environment while the public recognition becomes a major positive reinforcement factor and has to be deployed by the team lead at every possible occasion. This factors improve the general performance of the team and definitely improve the chances of any projects to success. But in addition, plain and simple, better meetings improve the bottom line of the entire business. The math is simple. If you have a perfect team, which is a two pizza team, seven members in one team lead, then, if your team saves only one hour on the meeting, because it was properly planned, structured and so on, you save an entire additional working day for another person who may work for your company. And if you are on the senior level, perhaps that will be enough to pay for even two individual contributors. Today we cover project communication, which is the single most important factor of project success. We mentioned that there are two more key factors that contribute to the 80% of the problems taken maybe only 20% of time to tackle them which are scope, creep and risk management. Let’s do it this way. We will try to cover them next time and a week from now. But I will ask you just one question in the quiz right after this class about risk management and judged by yourself. If you know the answer then you are good. If you don’t know the answer, let me know. And we will have perhaps a more extensive session on risk assessment and risk management. See you in a week. This is part of project managers not PMP is course to stay in the know subscribe to collective