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Tips for Great Project Communication

July 03, 2020 in Tips & Tools

A well-executed project depends on effective communication. Whether it’s between team members or stakeholders, the process will always move more smoothly when expectations, updates and KPIs (key performance indicators) are communicated openly.

Unlike the world of casual relationships, in the digital project management sphere, you can’t really ghost someone on your team.

Today’s climate of remote working and freelance team members (especially in 2020) can make the art of keeping everyone in the loop a little more challenging. If you’re invested in the idea of seamless, effective communication when it comes to your next project, here are some tips for keeping those lines of communication open.

Lay the ground rules

Communication happens in a much more organized way when each of your team members understands their role, tasks and measurements for success. Not only does this mean their work will be more effective, but it means that they likely won’t be scrambling to ask for last-minute feedback or updates.

If you want your team members to communicate, explain what kind of information you need from them and when, and how you want them to communicate, be it at regularly scheduled meetings or by using a project management platform like TaskBranch.

This should all be in writing and in a place that’s simple for team members to find and continuously access.

Use a great project management platform

Leverage advances in technology and make a digital project management platform part of your process. A quality project management platform will allow you to keep track of your workflow, see real-time updates from your team members and seamlessly communicate with them using a single platform.

If you’re working at an agency, you can even use this to handle and track multiple projects simultaneously, making your entire project roster much more efficient and streamlined. A project management platform also keeps everyone communicating in the same medium, so you’re not bouncing back between emails, chat windows and messaging apps.

Schedule regular check-ins and stick to them

It’s common to have a post-mortem session at the end of a project, detailing the strengths and weaknesses of the entire process, how well the team met expectations, whether the project itself met the criteria for project success and other factors like that.

However, it’s just as important to communicate throughout the process, especially if something isn’t working. Naturally, it’s equally helpful to keep the positive momentum going. So regular team updates are a great thing to schedule. The frequency of these will likely depend on the length of the project, its scope, as well as your company’s time and resources.

The nature of these meetings can be flexible too. Many companies find it helpful to schedule in-person roundtables, but Skype meetings can be just as effective, especially if you’re working with remote team members.

It’s also a good idea to draft an agenda before regular meetings and send it to your team, so they can be as prepared as possible.

Approach conflict collaboratively

Particularly during a tight timeline or a project with shifting priorities, your communications might involve addressing a bit of conflict. Use communication to your advantage to resolve this tension. Remember, everyone working on the project is on the same team. You all want the same outcome, and ultimately, the same thing for your business.

Try not to approach conflicts as you versus another team member, but instead, as the team versus an external challenge. Whether it’s a challenge that impedes your efficiency, threatens your budget or otherwise impacts the project’s success, it’s that you should be tackling, not another group or team member.

What is the challenge? How is it affecting the project outcome? How can you and your team members solve it efficiently and effectively? Make these ideas part of your communication strategy, rather than blaming individuals.

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Bad communication is one of the easiest ways for a project to go downhill. Effective communication, however, is a key tool in achieving project success, regardless of the size or scope you’re dealing with. The best way to encourage communication is by laying ground rules, scheduling regular opportunities for your team to communicate, and using a singular platform to share information. Try TaskBranch – it’s free for 30 days!

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