There is usually no shortage of good ideas. But how do you accomplish a successful project and how do you not lose track of tasks? If procedures and instruments of project management are used in a team, then there is usually nothing to stop a successful project.
To ensure that a good idea can also turn into a successful project, several people will usually have to work together well and in a goal-oriented and work-sharing manner. This is where project management can be very useful.
The project management process can be structured into different phases.
Source: KlimaKom eG
Initiation: The project is concretised on the basis of a “brilliant idea”: To which social problems do we intend to respond with this project? What are the targets? What kind of problems / hurdles could we face? What requirements do future users have? Thereupon companions are sought – People who can support the project ideally and with concrete work force: the project team constitutes itself. The project team is constituted – in terms of time and content. The kick-off is the official project launch, and can be concluded with a small celebration.
Planning: With a starting workshop it then officially gets going. The project team determines the project plan: Tasks, periods and deadlines for completion of tasks, resources (finances, know-how) and defines responsibilities for the fulfilment of tasks. If a project is extensive, it may be useful to define working groups.
Implementation and controlling: As soon as the plans are sufficiently concrete, implementation can begin: Work packages can be processed. It also makes sense to have a project manager who controls the project, i.e. “monitors” the status of the substeps and, if the actual status deviates from the target status, reflects the need for changes back to the project team or the working groups. On that basis, changes can then also be made to the project plan.
Finish: Just as systematically as a project was started, it should be completed: The experiences made should be critically reflected upon. What lessons have been learned? You can learn from these for further projects. The projects results should also be evaluated: Are we in time? on the budget? Do we reach the target groups / multipliers / funding providers? If the project is funded, a short final report may also be required.
Important to keep in mind: Some of the different subprocesses can run in parallel as well. It may make sense and be necessary to already execute planning steps during the initiation or, vice-versa, tasks of initiation can become relevant during the execution (e.g. to initiate a new project phase).
To ensure that motivation and enjoyment remain on the agenda: Besides the work on the content, opportunities for chats, exchanges and celebrations should also be offered from time to time.
If you want to learn more about the methodology of project management, you will find many interesting advises and work tools online provided in the project management manual. To be found here http://www.pm-handbuch.com/
Project management tools are also available online and in parts free of charge. The Computer Woche provides a good overview of project management software: http://www.computerwoche.de/a/die-besten-kostenlosen-projektmanagement-tools,2368400
Thanks to these free tools, project groups can coordinate and exchange information over the Internet. The online tools provide a central platform for project members to meet and exchange ideas. However, the free versions are usually limited and can only be used for one project in most cases.
Among the tools, “Trello” deserves special recognition. – not only because 12 million registered users (manufacturer information) are now using it. Trello relies on intuitive working and is based on the Kanban concept – a system developed in Japan for flexible, decentralized control of the production process (Gablers Wirtschaftslexikon). Instead of organizing projects and individual tasks in lists, these are displayed in index cards with which the user can interact visually in an intuitive manner. In other words, there are no longer any long e-mail chains or tables. The project can be seen at a single glimpse.
Go to Trello here: https://trello.com/
Stories of success
The foundation of the TransitionHaus in Bayreuth would not have been as successful without project management. Besides fundamental discussions on the values and norms of the house and the mutual acknowledgement of the goals and working methods of the individual initiatives, which are united under the umbrella of the TransitionHaus, the challenge of finding a house, i.e. rooms for the TransitionHaus, must be mastered. Work was divided into working groups and Trello was used as a project management tool. Especially in the intensive work phase of house-hunting, the focus was mainly on issues that had to be dealt with quickly and efficiently. Thereby the group feeling was lost. The group then realized how important it is to have a good time together without any purpose.