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What does Good Communication Look Like?
We've been there, in that Office Space situation where we are being reprimanded by our third boss for not putting a cover sheet on the TPS Report - or maybe, hopefully, not. The idea that memos go unread, emails get lost, and words said in passing are quickly forgotten is not new. And why does good office communication matter? Have you been the last to know that you were supposed to work on task x, or are you the project manager who didn't find out until too late that a critical task had gone forgotten by an employee? Whatever the situation is, good communication is vital, especially when it involves critical tasks in a project.
So what does good office and stakeholder communication look like? Companies that exhibit and facilitate good communication between employees and clients run smoothly. Everybody understands what they should be doing and why. They know when things are due and what to expect. No one is surprised if a task is behind schedule - because they knew about it at the daily meeting and have compensated in order to make up for the loss of time. Sound like a dream come true? Project management is important because it facilitates communication between team members, officemates, and clients and companies.
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How does Project Management Facilitate Communication?
We understand that good communication is important, but just how exactly does project management facilitate communication? Good project plans will include a communication plan. This plan will include in it when communication is to occur, who receives the communication, and by what means the communication is conducted. A great example of a project communication plan is available here. Good communication plans might include some of the following components:
- Distribution of the project plan
- Updating stakeholders and team members of the project status
- Issues reviews
- Reviewing the project's health
- Identifying risks
The important thing to take away is that you should make sure that all team members and stakeholders know when and how to expect pertinent information to be communicated.
Another way project management facilitates communication is the process itself. Project managers may require a daily meeting such as a "Scrum" in order to air project issues and update everyone on project status. Many project management software programs recognize the importance of project management in project communication, so they build in features such as forums or messaging for ease of communication between team members.
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For More Information:
For more information on good project communication and creating communication plans in your project, you may wish to read the following BrightHub articles:
"Elements of a Communication Plan: Viewing Stakeholders as an Audience" By Joe Taylor Jr.
"Using Weekly Status Reports to Improve Communication" a series by Ann Gordon
"Best Practices of Project Management: Clear Communication" by Joe Taylor Jr.
Importance of Project Management
- Importance of Project Management Series Introduction
- Project Management Increases Productivity
- Project Management Keeps Projects Within Budget
- Project Management Increases Communication
- Project Management Monitors Progress towards Specified Outcomes
- Project Mangement Decreases Risk
- Project Management Improves Product Quality
- Project Management Streamlines Decision-Making
- Relating Project Management and Strategic Objectives
- Project Management Satisfies Clients and Customers