How to Manage Multiple Projects (And Keep Your Sanity)
ARE YOU struggling to manage multiple projects?
Being a project manager is probably one of the most challenging jobs. As a PM, you not only become a multi-purpose individual, but you’re also responsible for everyone getting their work done. If you fail on your task of keeping track of the processes, it could cost your company or your client a lot of money.
That sounds pretty frightening, right? To help you manage on the journey of efficient project management, we’ve compiled a list of techniques that help you maintain your calm and guide the team to success.
While prioritizing seems like the obvious first step for managing multiple projects, some people need help structuring their tasks. Here are the questions you should ask yourself to help you prioritize your projects:
- What projects will have negative consequences if we put them off?
- What projects will give us the biggest return if we tackle them now?
- What are the long-term projects that can be done slowly over time?
- What are the short-term projects that require immediate attention?
Once you’ve answered these questions, you can shift your focus toward what needs to be taken care of first, and what can be worked on longer.
To get a quick overview of your project’s performance, create a project dashboard.
2. Set expectations and delegate
Now that you know what needs to be worked on and when it needs to be done, set deadlines, allocate resources, and commit to meeting your deadlines. Once deadlines and responsibilities are assigned throughout your team, it is time for step 3.
3. Track everything
Keeping track of who is in charge of tasks, what documents or resources are needed to accomplish tasks, and making sure everything is being completed in a timely fashion… these are all things that you can easily keep organized on a single platform. There are also some activities that might seem a little time-consuming in the beginning but will make your life a lot easier when managing multiple projects.
For example, setting up a tracking system for your project cost management may seem a little difficult in the first place, but will return a huge benefit.
4. Constantly communicate
In creative agencies, customer management plays a huge part of project manager’s role. Keeping clients in the loop about what stages the project is in, making sure they’re happy with the product thus far and don’t have any changes, these are all very important to successfully meeting your deadline. No one likes to be kept in the dark or wondering how their money is being used, so it is vital to stay in contact with your customers.
One of the tactics you should try out in order to manage multiple projects is to use online project management software. Great project management software should help you to organize every single aspect of your project down to hours billed, worked, conversations had via email or phone, email analytics, files, anything. Definitely an easier way than trying to keep all that in your head or shuffle between Excel spreadsheets, right?