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April 6, 2018

Insights

Communication is the key to successful projects

Everyone has the best intentions when they kickoff a project.

The energy and excitement of the new project helps launch things forward but sometimes you hit a snag. Truthfully, several factors can cause the snag - personal presences, stakeholders who were left out, deliverables that missed the mark. The important thing is to communicate often and keep pushing forward. Here are some tips on what to do when this happens:

Get everyone on the same page
In today’s digital world we do a lot of work and communications through tools like Slack, BaseCamp and good old email. Sometimes we forget that it is best to get everyone on a conference call or meet in person to work through certain issues.

Don’t point fingers
As issues are assessed it’s important to understand what, why, when and how but remember that you are a team. Your mother probably told you never to point fingers because there are always 3 pointed back at you. If you are in the wrong, take responsibility and work for resolution. Address, assess, and move forward.

Keep the project’s goals in focus
Sometimes issues create more trouble and chaos and when they do, you must focus everyone back to the agreed goals of the project. Remind them of why you are where you are and the decisions that led to that point. Work through the issues to get things back on track.

Here’s a recent example: We worked on a large website project and things started super smoothly. We were firing on all cylinders- until they weren’t. Somewhere along the line, the client had some internal issues arise that required us to put the project on hold for a few months while they worked them out. During this time we were in constant communication and continued our weekly calls so that we didn’t loose momentum and once the green light was given we were able to get on the gas.

We knew from past experience that once a project looses momentum that it can be difficult to jump back in where we left off. Often times the client has new goals (that we are unaware of) or has lost sight on what the goals were from the start. To prevent this from happening and to make sure that we all stayed on the same page, we found it important to keep in contact until the situation was settled and we were able to continue.

 

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