Posted on

How to Communicate Effectively as a Project Manager

This guest article is by Beth Sager, Drexel University
Communication is essential to the success and well-being of your project team. It doesn’t matter if your team is working for an internal client or an external client, communication is key to success.
Although communicating effectively as a project manager can be easy, it takes some effort upfront. It will save you time and make your client’s life easier.
Know Your Stakeholders
First, be sure to know your stakeholders. You need to know who your stakeholders are, regardless of whether they are within or outside the company. Individuals with different needs may be included in your stakeholders. Some people will need a high-level overview, while others will want all the details. It is important to know who needs what information and not to over- or under-provide it.
Effective communication starts with understanding your audience and stakeholders.
Second, don’t assume all team members have access to the information they need. It is easy to assume that because someone is involved in a project, they will receive the information they need. This is not always true. To ensure that all people involved are notified of any communication, you will need to create a plan.
Stay on-Topic and Communicate Clearly
Keep your communications short and to-the-point. Don’t get distracted by sending emails. You won’t get read if you do. You don’t want to be known as a slow writer and a waste of time. Everyone is busy so it is important that you respect that. Don’t send any information if it isn’t needed or can wait. This is not the time to make yourself appear important.
Be prepared to offer a solution to problems before you bring them to the team. This will make your team and stakeholders feel like you are a problem solver.
When setting expectations, it is important to be punctual
You want to ensure that your team members have enough time for you to send your message and to respond. They might need to do some research to find the right answer or formulate the correct questions.
Communication is key to the smooth running of your project. Your project will run smoothly through all phases if it is managed well. If you don’t communicate effectively, your project may hit the brakes unexpectedly.
This article was written by Beth Sager, Drexel University Online. It is an accredited university located in Philadelphia. Drexel offers an online MS in Project Management for those who are interested in advancing their project management careers.