We’re social creatures, in pretty much every aspect of our lives. Aside from finding a good set of friends for Friday nights, and a partner to confide in, we look for those we can trust with our professional aims. Teamwork cannot bear fruit if we’re deceived, confused, or regularly let down by our peers.
So, like a personal relationship, effective project management relies on trusting each other to do your utmost when the time calls for it. We must take care when selecting our collaborators. Let’s dig down to the inherent value of people you can count on…
Business has little patience for flying off the handle. Panic and frustration don’t help anyone; it’s important for your team to acknowledge that things will, at some point, go a bit haywire. Their attitude to a sudden project brief, or requiring them to tweak their submission ever so slightly, will give you a sense of how they might act in a crisis, and whether they can be trusted to deal with it.
A level head, more than anything else, establishes stability. There will of course be occasions where you, as project manager, have to give someone leeway – perhaps due to a personal issue or misconstrued information. If you can rely on their work ethic to be top-notch (under regular circumstances), then they should be able to have faith in your empathic qualities. It’s a two-way street, and it makes for the strongest bond you can forge together.
Freelancers – and any workers in general, come to think of it – don’t want to be considered as ‘one of the herd’. A sense of individuality is empowering: it respects our talents, our uniqueness, which surely is the ultimate fulfilment a professional worker can ask for. In short, we want our expertise to be valued in an industry we’re passionate about.
Project managers shouldn’t ignore the input from their team. These are people, after all, that you’ve approached on the basis of their skills, portfolio and specialised insight. No use will come of treating them as a disposable commodity, whose opinions aren’t worth very much. If they suggest an approach to that hasn’t crossed your mind (clients, too, listen up!), then hear them out – even if it’s not wholly predictable, it could be the best thing you’ve ever had a hand in creating.
So much of our productivity is time-sensitive. The business world never stops hurtling from one project to the next, and there have to be strict cut-off points for maximising all those ideas, resources and promotional tactics.
When someone is a stickler for deadlines, praise them – they are the lifeblood of a productive team. And if they manage to get a project in ahead of schedule, even better! This solidifies their loyalty to you, an especially pertinent characteristic when you consider how many clients a freelancer could be working for. Out of that comes trust, which means you can set a full, lucrative month of assignments, knowing that everything will be delivered as you expect.
Yet how do we represent trust onscreen, with a portal that lays every piece of necessary information bare? Free project management tools can symbolise and incentivise your transparency. Check out what Skwish can do for your business, and don’t take our word for it: see the features for yourself…