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Every business is limited by the resources available to it at any given moment. Resources may range from money to time to manpower, and as companies decide whether to approve projects, they must consider these resources. As a project leader, it is crucial that people make the most of these assets, both to reassure stake holders a job can be done per specifications and maximize the efficiency of projects.

Launching an initiative can be both invigorating and stressful. Projects are invigorating because people are often emotionally involved in the plans they propose and take charge of. If someone commits to becoming a project leader, it is generally because they have a vested interest in seeing it come to fruition. At the same time, it is naturally stressful. The prospect of managing people and deadlines, when combined with the pressure to complete a project with the allotted resources, can quickly add-up.

So, what can project leaders do to make the launching and management of projects as easy as possible? Gallup noted the importance the importance of managing both people and processes to ensure a successful project launch and execution.

Managing the processes
Most companies have some sort of process and policy requirements that must be observed. Many projects fail simply because managing all of these different processes and practices wind up eating all of their time – project managers become bureaucrats who spend hours writing emails, doing paperwork, implementing performance metrics and filling out logs instead of accomplishing what is actually important.

Project leaders need to engage key stakeholders to discuss the metrics and processes by which an initiative is being judged. By negotiating with these individuals, leaders can often find ways to compromise that may lead to less stressful practices and processes being applied to the project.

At the end of the day, all both parties want is to benefit the company. If projects fail, no one succeeds – not the stakeholders who approved it, not the leader who managed it and not the people who spent all their time working on it. If negotiating some of the processes and practices can improve the efficiency of the project, it warrants some consideration.

Managing the people
The other ingredient for a successful project is managing people effectively and efficiently. The workers in a project are vital to its success, and as such, the leader needs to spend time in early meetings trying to understand what motivates them and build project momentum.

Project leaders should be able to identify the strengths and weaknesses of their teams so they can get the most output. Additionally, managers must have the capacity to learn and grow with team members along the way. Projects can be bonding experiences, but there are often several challenges and obstacles along the way that must be navigated to maximize success. A manager who knows the strengths of his or her workers can circumvent these challenges more specifically, particularly when team members trust and respect the project manager.