Communication in Project Management

After viewing an example of a communication in three forms; email, voicemail, and face-to-face, I concluded that communication in person is usually the best option. After first reading the email stating that Jane needed Mark to finish his report, I felt slightly annoyed. It seemed like Jane was not at all concerned about what Mark had to do, but was only concerned about her own deadline. The voicemail made me feel a little less annoyed because I could sense friendliness in Jane’s voice. I was still unsatisfied. Finally, when I watched the face-to-face interaction, I felt comfortable with the exchange. Jane seemed polite and friendly, yet she still conveyed her message without being pushy.

Communication is a very important component of any project and should be handled very carefully. According to Dr. Stolovitch, effective communication is characterized by spirit and attitude, timing, and the personality of the recipients (Laureate, 2011). It is not possible to see body language through an email. It is best to meet in person with colleagues and stakeholders when possible and especially when communicating important facts, figures, changes, or other data. A project manager can put a stakeholder or team member at ease simply by smiling when explaining that the deadline has to be pushed ahead. Sending an email about a changing deadline can have destructive effects. In person, the stakeholder or team member can look directly at the PM as he is talking and can ask any questions immediately without having time to fume while typing an email response.

 

References

Laureate Education, Inc. (Producer) (2010). Communicating with stakeholders. [Video Webcast] Retrieved from https://class.waldenu.edu/webapps/portal/frameset.jsp?tab_tab_group_id=_2_1&url=%2Fwebapps%2Fblackboard%2Fexecute%2Flauncher%3Ftype%3DCourse%26id%3D_2099917_1%26url%3D

 

 

A Failed Project

Education 6145

A project I participated in that was not successful was when a family member wanted to open an in-home daycare. I had all of the expertise and I enjoy doing projects of that nature, so it only seemed natural for me to begin immediately. The deliverable was to be her daycare license.  I proceeded to arrange meetings with inspectors, measure student space, review local policies, etc. The family member seemed to be on board in the beginning, but eventually, her enthusiasm waned and then it died altogether. Slowly, I discovered that I was in the boat by myself because she had abandoned ship.

Looking at the logistics of the project, I conclude that had I conducted the very first step of the project as outlined in Life Cycle Phase, I would have saved myself a lot of effort. The Life Cycle Phase suggests asking two questions: Can the project be done?  Should the project be done? (Portney, et al. 2008, p. 77). I knew that the project could be done, but I did not consider whether or not the project should be done. In truth, my family member enjoyed single life and did not like to be stuck in the house for long periods of time. While being a daycare teacher was conducive to her needs for her family and her finances, it did not work well with her personality. According to the text, I should have abandoned the project in the conception phase because, “if the answer to either question is a definite “no,” under no circumstance should the project move on” (Portney, et a., 2008, p. 77-78). The next time I undertake such a project, I will use the Life Cycle Phase so as to prevent wasting any time.

References

Portny, S. E., Mantel, S. J., Meredith, J. R., Shafer, S. M., Sutton, M. M., & Kramer, B. E. (2008). Project management: Planning, scheduling, and controlling projects. Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.