Top 15 Project Management Principles For Beginners This Year
Leadership is taking on the ever-growing importance in every sphere of the world. Be it the Information Technology sector, Software Development organizations, traditional factories, businesses, titanic corporations, etc. You name it, and there will be essential roles in that body which requires leadership. Why am I stressing the importance of leadership instead of just telling you some quick and handy project management principles, the convenient project management basics, and the crispiest talk of the town project management software?
Because you cannot be an effective, result-oriented, successful disseminating project manager without developing leadership qualities, some people are born leaders; others learn—those who don’t struggle and find themselves lost.
You might not be an effective leader yet, but the fact that you are here indicates you want to learn how to become a better project manager so you can ensure the smoothest work ethics and the most splendid projects on time.
As a beginner, you can still wonder about the proper definition of some words in Project Management studies. So, we will delve deeper into the depths and discover every implication there is to know.
Before we list down the most effective project management principles for you, let us understand some project management basics.
Understanding Project Management
Project Management is an art. It’s not simply managing a project, at least not for our purpose. So how do you define Project Management?
Project Management involves different methods, processes, techniques, and tasks being performed in varying phases/stages of its life cycle, under a defined timeline, to ensure an end-goal completion.
This end-goal depends on your project. It can be anything, be it a sales pitch, product development, marketing strategy execution, etc. As I said, it can be anything that requires itself to be defined as a project.
But wait, what is a project?
You can understand a project as an activity that consists of a series of tasks in different stages, being completed one by one, so it finally accumulates in the result.
It can be team-based, which it often is, or it can be on a more personal level, with you being project manager, worker, communicator, all-in-one.
In project management basics, it is commonly broken down to 5 stages in its life cycle:
Beginning with Initiation and ending with Closure.
With that out of the way, let’s try to understand the basics of project management software; in the end, we will also list the best one we think is available.
Project Management Software
Project management software can be a program, service, or online platform. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a software per-say.
The project management software you use needs to be capable of handling the minutest and intricate aspects of your projects. It should be able to provide you with the latest and updated tools available out there.
Some common tools are Kanban card-based system, Gantt charts, communication channels, timelines, progress reports and analytics, statistics, discussion boards, and several more.
As you frequently increase your use of project management software, your familiarity and skills will also grow.
Which project management software should you use? We will come to that later.
Let’s move on from the project management basics.
15 Key Project Management Principles for Beginners
A principle is a fundamental proposition that acts as the foundation for a body of knowledge.
In Project Management Body of Knowledge, the book on Project Management studies, there are no clear-cut established principles set down yet. It falls to us experts to bring you the project management principles that we have developed in our experience.
All of them are beginner-friendly and meant for anyone acquainted with project management basics, and anyone who is not.
1. The Mindset Principle
Before you begin any undertaking, you need to have your mind straight. It would help if you determined whether this project holds enough importance for you to go all out. And if it doesn’t, how should you go about working on it.
Know your priorities and determine whether you can devote yourself to the project. Prepare yourself.
2. The Skillset Principle
As a beginner, you might not possess exceptional skills yet. It is a journey, and you will learn with every step. Assess yourself and deduce the skills you possess, your capabilities, your qualities.
As a project manager, it will assist in knowing how much task management you need to delegate and how much of it you need to get done by yourself.
3. The Objective Principle
What are the objectives of this project? Which goals will you accomplish upon its completion? What are the primary objectives, secondary objectives, and the optional ones?
These questions are vital for you to deal with so you and your team will have a clear-cut end in mind.
4. The Structure Principle
Laying out the structure of your project is very crucial for the systematic working of your team. Having an unstructured and undecided project will lead to confusion, unwanted delay, and very choppy unfiltered work on your project.
This does not sit well with sponsors who have their money on the line with your project. Every person would like to get what they pay for.
Break down the structure of your project and make sure every team member understands the different details of every stage.
5. The Lifecycle Principle
This is made up of the five stages we went over in the project management basics.
Deciding the time frame of every stage, the required deadline, the base outline. All of this consists of the life cycle.
You need to understand how you will take the project from beginning to end successfully within the deadline.
6. Sponsor and Stakeholder Principle
Not to go too deep into the official definition, a project stakeholder is any entity that will be affected at your project’s conclusion.
A sponsor is simply someone who will finance your project and provide you with the necessary resources.
Why are we concerned?
These are the people who have a say on the project, their opinions hold gravity, and more frequently than you’d like, their demands will have to be met.
Now, this doesn’t indicate that you become servile. It only implies that they should be satisfied with how the project is going and at the prospect of its success.
So be concerned at their outlooks and analyze it well.
7. Leadership Principle
While it is important to gather every voice and opinion, it is also important for every person to know their role in the hierarchy.
This does not mean autocracy. It is your job as the project manager to consult every person in the team and make the best decisions for the whole project, not just best for you.
In the end, you will be held responsible for the project’s success and its failure, so sharpen your leadership qualities.
8. Role Assignment Principle
Being the project manager, you need to be capable of assessing who is right for the job. This means you will decide who is suitable for writing, who is suitable for design, and who is suitable for micro-managing tasks.
The completion of the project is heavily dependent on the right person with the right skill to do the right job at the right time. That’s a lot of rights you need to keep in mind before assigning any roles and assignments.
9. Reward and Guidance Principle
Reward your project members when they complete a task. This is something simple but very significant. It can be simple praise; it can be a role upgrade, anything to your liking.
But what do you do when they make mistakes and fail to keep up their end?
It’s an easy mistake for any beginner project manager to think that shouting, admonishing, and criticizing a colleague will encourage them to do better. Wrong.
Think back at the times someone in upper management did the same to you. After that, you hated them every time you saw them. Don’t repeat the same mistake.
For the smooth progress of your project, it is very important to respect those working with you. So, reward them when they do things right, and guide them when they make mistakes.
10. Scheduling Principle
That one word is of the utmost importance for your project, and you need to spend substantial time deciding how you will dissect the tasks within deadlines.
You need to be aware of your project’s chronology and what course it is on today and what course it will take tomorrow.
Schedule your tasks rightly.
11. Risk Factor Principle
Risk is a scary word. You need to start taking active risks in your ventures.
People often say starting a business is very risky.
What they fail to mention is that when done rightly, it is tremendously successful.
Do not pool all your resources and just jump in. Take the time to review every possible outcome of your decision, deduce the best one, and take the risk.
Prayer helps as well.
12. Progress and Report Principle
Continuously update yourself with the progress of your projects, tackle any obstacle, and notify the stakeholders.
13. Milestone Principle
This is complementary to scheduling rightly.
Creating sizable effective project milestones helps the project member to maintain a smooth workflow and streamline the project.
It falls on you as the project manager to create the right milestones.
14. Communication Principle
The importance of effective communication cannot be stressed enough.
Clear instructions, announcements, addressing queries, and just speaking to your colleagues are important points to keep in mind as a project manager.
Communicate across your team clearly and effectively.
15. The Judgement Principle
Review every task when it’s submitted and scour for any details that might have been left out. Fix them and only then move on to the next stage.
The best Project Management Software for you
Many resourceful software and services promise a user-friendly setup for a beginner who is still learning project management basics or the experienced professional who knows what.
Which one is the right one for you?
After going over many established names in the market, we found one, PeppyProjects by PeppyBiz, to be compelling.
It offers a very user-friendly interface that doesn’t make you go crazy with small technical terms here and there. Everything is very organized. The tools their project management software offers are too innumerable for this post, and you won’t find anything lacking.
You can practice every principle we mentioned in this post with their online-platform. A perfect start for a beginner. Understand these project management principles well and apply them to your projects. Start your journey as a prospect project manager today, and to become an even better one, try PeppyBiz.