pmboCommunication is present in all human relationships. Since the first days of life we already know how to inform our moms that it is time to eat or change diapers. Perhaps that is why we all think that we know how to communicate minimally well, after all it is a natural process. This is a certainty that the vast majority of project managers also have. But is that really true?
That’s not what the statistics indicate. Research from the Project Management Institute (PMI) shows that among the projects that failed, 29% of them had their problems originated in issues related to communication.
Source: PMI’s Pulse of the Profession 2018
But if, in theory, every project manager knows how to communicate, why is communication still the source of so many problems?
Unraveling communication in projects
As in many human actions, even when it comes to communication, the danger lies in the details. Many managers focus too much on number control and reporting without taking the time to clarify them and make sure they are achieving objectives and being understood by stakeholders. We know that effective communication basically involves four elements:
Behind this simple scheme, however, are the “dangerous” details. Let’s shed some light on the main ones so they don’t bring you any more trouble:
1 – Who
Not all stakeholders need to receive all information the whole time. Properly selecting the recipients will help to make your reports relevant as they will know that when they receive it will be something that is important to them.
2 – What
We live in the information age, which means that everyone is already overwhelmed with more data than they can possibly handle. So, in addition to selecting the audience, knowing how to generate attractive reports and graphics, synthesized and in proper language is a good way to facilitate understanding and arouse interest.
3 – Background
It is likely that your communication will reach people of different age groups, levels of training and, above all, level of knowledge of the situation involving the company and the project. Keep this in mind when producing your reports.
4 – How
The means used to execute the communication can be decisive for its success. Don’t stick to more traditional methods like emails and check point meetings. Do not forget to use the Intranet, Corporate Reports, Noticeboards and Brochures to disseminate actions and publish results, especially if the project has great scope and impact on the organization. Take the opportunity to explore the most interactive formats, such as videos and webinars to reach larger audiences and improve engagement.
What the PMBOK® Guide says
The PMBOK®, a guide published by the Project Management Institute, highlights three relevant processes for consistent communication management:
Plan the Management of Communications. This is a question of developing an appropriate plan for communication guided by the information needs of stakeholders, the means available and the needs of the project.
Manage Communications. This aims to ensure that project information is collected, distributed, stored, monitored until its final disposal in a timely and appropriate manner.
Monitoring Communications. This aims to ensure that the information needs of the project and interested parties are met.
Now that you know a little more about the importance of communication in project management, take advantage and learn about SoftExpert PPM. It has the necessary resources to support you in managing communication and extracting information to keep stakeholders well informed. In addition, this software that allows organizations to easily manage projects, programs, people, services and finances through a complete set of features that simplify project management best practices with a low total cost of ownership.