8.8. Solutions Fast Track
126.96.36.199. Identifying Project Team Requirements
- Factors to consider when forming your project team include: organizational, technical, logistical, interpersonal, and political.
- Defining needed roles and responsibilities before identifying people to fill those roles will help you create an optimal team.
- Identifying needed competencies will help you select the people best suited to the project. It also helps you identify skill gaps you may need to look outside your firm to fill.
- Identifying constraints to staff availability is important so you can work with these constraints in your project scheduling (discussed later in this book).You may find you have to hire external staff to work around any significant availability issues.
- Identifying how your project team will interface with other parts of the organization may be required, depending on the nature of the project.
188.8.131.52. Identifying Staffing Requirements and Constraints
- Once you've identified high-level roles and responsibilities, you can begin looking for the appropriate people to fill these roles.
- Once you've identified specific people for various roles, you'll need to use whatever power and authority you have to get those people assigned to your project team.
- Sometimes the most desirable or needed team members are unavailable either temporarily or permanently. You'll have to look for these constraints and find ways to deal with themeither through modifying your project schedule or through hiring external staff to fill in gaps.
- Constraints can also be limitations on internal skills and talents that must be addressed through additional training or through additional hiring (temp, contractor, permanent, etc.).
184.108.40.206. Defining Roles and Responsibilities
- Once you've formed your project team, you need to assign each team member a specific role and set of responsibilities.
- Clearly defined roles and responsibilities help avoid finger pointing, turf wars, and other nonproductive human behavior.
- Responsibilities should be clearly delineated. Have team members work as a team to carve out appropriate roles and responsibilities so they begin to take ownership of the project.
220.127.116.11. Acquiring Needed Staff
- You'll need to work with selected team member's managers (if you're not their direct supervisor) to make sure they are released for project work when needed.
- Identify any procedural issues for pulling people onto your project team and work to get those in place prior to kicking off your first team meeting.
- Identify the cost of your team from a payroll standpoint. In some companies, you'll need to include labor hours or the fully burdened cost of each person per hour (the cost of salary plus benefits plus payroll taxes, etc.).
- If you'll be bringing in outside staff, you'll need to work with any external scheduling/availability issues and you'll need to add the cost of these folks to your project costs (we'll discuss developing your project budget later in the book).
18.104.22.168. Forming the Team
- Once you have identified and acquired your team, you should create and distribute a team roster. It helps foster team communication now and in the future.
- Identify any need for team training, whether formal or informal. Make sure the team has all the skills it needs, individually and collectively, to successfully complete this project.
- Hold a team (kick-off ) meeting to introduce team members and to help everyone begin to form a sense of belonging to a team.
- If your team will be using non-standard technology, make sure everyone is trained and has equal access to these technologies. While it might be acceptable to assume everyone can use e-mail (though you should make sure that's the case), you shouldn't assume everyone understands how to use instant messaging, intranet sites, or collaboration tools. Provide training and documentation whenever possible to ensure everyone can use team project technology equally.
- You'll need to manage team performance, so make sure you have processes and procedures in place to monitor, measure, and evaluate individual and team project performance. Make sure you have identified how you'll handle poor performance before the project gets fully underway.
- Create genuine methods of recognition and rewards that will reward good (or great) performance. Look for opportunities to instill a bit of fun or humor into the process.