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Strategy & Project Management. You Need Both.

Business goals don’t happen without project management. That relationship between strategy and project management doesn’t happen without buy in from the managers who are guiding the overall direction of the company, and the people whose role it is to guide delivery.

This is where the root of a business’ strategic success starts. Put it this way; a business can never make progress, if the sweat-work doesn’t reflect the vision.

For example, if a business’ founder wants to move his whole company onto the cloud to reduce costs, increase workflow automation and allow their staff to serve more clients more effectively, that’s a fantastic goal. But if the project managers and participants don’t understand that goal, and see the cloud project as just being “something the boss wants”, they’ll never fully buy into what they’re working on. It won’t be a high priority, it won’t be something that they care about beyond ticking boxes, and they won’t be connected to the outcome.

You can see this kind of relationship as being an incredibly healthy one to build within your company. Here’s why. When every single project reflects where the company wants to be, and when everyone involved understands the reasons, there’s no room for apathy, and a lot of room for healthy collaboration.

Communication is a major part of this. Initiatives can’t happen “just because the boss said so” – they must be shown to project managers in terms of their larger impact on what the business is attempting to achieve. That kind of sync is vital, and it allows for a lot more productivity.

That sync is also more likely to ensure that the individual projects are going to work. If they have that connection with the overall strategy, and that strategy is connected to the vision, they have a better investment, more confidence from their managers and more involvement in the objective of the project.

Here’s what strategist Evan Harris has to say:

“The only way to be successful with strategy is if the entire company is aware of it and making sure that all actions taken further the business along towards that strategic goal. Be clear with your project management team as to how their work will help to achieve that goal… If team members don’t understand the role they play in contributing to company strategy, then your company is far less likely to achieve that goal.”

When you create a strategy, communicate it, push it through every project and make sure that everyone has buy in, there’s a competitive edge. You run lean, you run clean, and you don’t waste projects or leave them unfinished and under realised.

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