You are participating in a project, but something goes wrong? You feel that it can become a spectacular failure instead of an amazing success?
Starting a new project meets with the dream of becoming a great achievement that the company or a private person wants to reach and be proud of. Among many situations that you experienced in the programming profession or the IT industry in general, there are some points that should be emphasized and introduced into the team’s life in order to make every project a triumph. Of course, not every project has the same situation, so the information below can be treated as a comprehensive guideline or just as partial advice.
We live in times where we talk to each other less and less. Social media and many communication tools allow us unfortunately to avoid people, and this would be good if you wanted to become a Hikikomori like your lazy but purrrfect cat, using only this means of contact with the world. But are we aware of how the lack of communication skills can affect us in private and at work? Usually, managers are aware of it, and this is why companies spend way more money on the training of employees’ soft skills than they used to about 10 years ago. Currently, only in Poland, the Register of Training Institutions counted over 3,300 training companies whose area of service was personal development. This means that the demand for this kind of workshop is huge. To be honest, interpersonal communication is one of the most important parts of our lives. Can you imagine that you are still fighting with your partner because you don’t know how to talk? That you can’t acquire a client because you don’t know how to negotiate? Or maybe the ambiance in your team is unpleasant because you don’t understand each other (I don’t mean foreign languages)?
High interpersonal skills are currently very desirable. A person who knows how to communicate with others seems self-confident, professional and competent. By achieving high interpersonal communication skills, you get rid of limits in many areas of life. At SolDevelo, we work on our relationships, both private and business ones, so, for example, we organize an annual soft skills training for Team Leaders, whose task is to care about the ambiance in their teams.
Being open to the world and people will make your life easier!
Smart project management
Project management isn’t only about the performance and distribution of tasks. Planning every step is necessary in order for the project to remain organized and on-schedule. A deep comprehension of planning sets the project on the right track from the beginning. A good practice is to involve all stakeholders in the project’s life and to create a common policy. They should be aware of any changes as well. Keeping the project in a settled frame is always a good choice for both the contractor and the client, and this can be achieved through the use of smart planning rules.
Smart planning enables one to estimate the time, tools, costs and efforts necessary for proper project delivery. We understand that smart planning is to not overestimate any of the executive factors. But real SMART planning is an acronym. From now, the phrase “S.M.A.R.T.“ will be understood as: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely.
Such a planning approach delivers experience-based results to meet your needs. The practice of considering, estimating, and introducing all these 5 components before the project’s start is a guarantee of success.
Specific project goals and milestones
Goals, goals, and once again… Deadlines! Having clear goals that are understandable for every team member, put into specific time frames, is a solid basis for success. Of course, establishing goals themselves, without proper actions to achieve them, makes no sense. Every project has phases that we can call milestones. How exactly should we understand the term “milestone”? Milestones are tools in project management that help in reaching one’s purpose. They can be only anchors, like the start and the end of the project, but they can also be a completion of a bigger phase, getting us closer to our main goal. These specific points put along the project’s timeline always allow a team to make a review: What was done, what we are working on, what needs to be improved/done. Sometimes, such meetings cause a total change of the project’s purpose, which is why they are important to hold. The main advantage of creating milestones is that all team members have a chance to be up to date with the situation in their project.
Support from the management/team leader
There are many traits of project managers or team leaders that are required in these positions. The leader should be just a fine guy, but respectable. They should be a person who you can rely on. The most important thing about such a relationship is to have the time to support the team. This is the mystery of being the best boss. What more can managers do to make the team members excel at their jobs?
The best leaders know what motivates their teams and they use this knowledge. They inspire others by their attitude and engagement at work. A leader should be a role model of the best practices and a real example of success. A great boss should be a good listener. Listening is not all. Hearing and understanding the team’s difficulties has an impact on its productivity.
The team’s skills
For sure, there is no success without proper team’s skills. And each member’s, of course. Especially in the IT industry, improving one’s skills is obvious or it even constitutes some kind of duty. The technology sector is one of the most developing areas among other professions, so it is clear that you still need to learn new things. Moreover, the passion for technology, especially programming, is being discovered by an increasing number of people. This means that the competition is huge and will still be growing. Fortunately, more and more high schools, academies, studies, and postgraduate schools offer subjects connected to the IT industry, such as programming, QA and computer science, which are treated as classic ones, but these days, one can observe an increase in IT areas that are more advanced and complicated than classical programming. More often, we can encounter subjects like artificial intelligence, game studies, cyber linguistics, the Internet of things and many, many different and strange for ordinary people, fields of study. Besides schools, there are numerous institutes and organizations whose certificates are precious and desirable for programmers. Some leading ones are Scrum.org – not only programming. In general, their offer focuses on project management; Amazon Web Services – IT infrastructure services for business, based on cloud computing (previously: web services); Oracle for Java programmers, and ISTQB for quality assurance. All of these programs are financially and organizationally supported by SolDevelo. We can boast of highly-skilled and professional employees. They are a reason for our pride!
The above list is only a kind of guideline for everyone who wants to improve teamwork and still work on the project’s triumph. I hope these 5 tips will open the door to success to you, and lead to a better management path. Of course, there are more things that will make you a winner. There’s only one thing to add: Never stop improving. Your work, your team, yourself. This is the key to success.