Did you know that it’s more common for small companies to have project management issues than large? There is not one specific reasoning behind this, but could be due to having a small budget, unclear planning and timeline, not enough labor, or resources, etc. It depends on the company. Being that I work for a small company that is facing project management challenges, I wanted to dive into this further. The questions I asked myself were:
- Is this a project or process management issue?
- What is the root of the problem?
- Who is responsible?
- How can we resolve this issue?
Project management is a single project with a definitive beginning and end with a set goal. It’s about the destination. Process management refers to a series of ongoing or reoccurring obstacles within a business. It’s about the journey. (1) With this in mind, it appears the issue my company faces has both components, but more so project management. We do not have a person in charge of managing the project which leads to many challenges and delays within each project, campaign or launch. We have many processes and systems in place that facilitate our daily day to day work which include Jira, Trello, Confluence, Slack and Google Workspace. Although our systems need improvement or consolidation, it’s not the reason we run into process inefficiencies. To get to the root of the inefficiencies I preformed the 6 Question Problem Identifier. These questions are who, what, why, where, how and when (2). The most important question is the “why” because this can be and should be asked more than once (3). The answers drew to the conclusion that roles were not clearly defined, there was no accountability to meet deadlines, no strict timelines, no structure of prioritization, and lack of communication.
While trying to figure out who is responsible by using an RACI chart, I realized it’s not one person in particular (4). To resolve this issue, we would have to sit down as a team and implement a new way to attack each project, using our processes and systems to help us. We will need to define roles and everyone’s part along with deadlines at the beginning of each new project. We can use a Gantt Chart for planning and scheduling to keep the team on the same page. Tasks will be assigned and uploaded to Jira. Each Jira task link can be pasted into the Gantt Chart so everyone can easily follow the process of other team members. If there is any confusion or delays, their needs to be constant communication. This can be done through a slack channel used only for that specific project. These new implementations can definitely reduce the issue if not solve it entirely.
Questions For Reader: What problems does your workforce face? Is it project or process management related? Have you tried to solve the issue before? What do you think are the best process systems a company can use?
- “Process Management vs Project Management. Which Is the Best for My Business? • Checkify.” Checkify, 15 Feb. 2021, checkify.com/blog/project-management-vs-process-management/.
- Class PPT. 1 tuprd-my.sharepoint.com/:b:/r/personal/tue28808_temple_edu/Documents/Documents/_Professr
- the Mind Tools Content Team By the Mind Tools Content Team, et al. “5 Whys: Getting to the Root of a Problem Quickly.” Problem-Solving Skills From MindTools.com, www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTMC_5W.htm.
- Kantor, Bob. “The RACI Matrix: Your Blueprint for Project Success.” CIO, CIO, 30 Jan. 2018, www.cio.com/article/2395825/project-management-how-to-design-a-successful-raci-project-plan.html.