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Monday, January 26, 2015

Skills a Project Manager should have

I get asked this question a lot, “Which skills are most important for a project manager to succeed?” In all honesty, job of a project manager is not an easy one, while he has no direct authority, he has a great amount of responsibility and a greater number of deliverables. A manager has direct control over his team but a project manager has none and yet, he is tasked with getting everyone to work together to deliver. It is a tough job and one thing is for sure, only people with experience under their belt should take on the role of a project manager.

Here are some skills that are must have for a project manager :
  • Project planning in terms of resources, deliverables and schedule.
  • Identifying risks ahead of time and communicating to the stakeholders.
  • Ability to motivate the team and keep them focused on the tasks at hand.
  • Ability to deal with different and sometimes conflicting personalities in the team.
  • Being organized.

    Aditi Chopra is an experienced leader in the software industry.
    She is a consultant, writer and a leader.
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Sunday, May 19, 2013

Giveaway of my BPM book

I am doing a promotional giveaway of my Business Process Management eBook on LibraryThing. The giveaway ends on 06/09/2013.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Tips from my BPM book

Tips from my BPM book:

  •  Only when a process solves a business problem, it is a success.
  •   A common mistake amateurs make is they underestimate resistance to process.
  •   If it cannot be measured, it cannot be improved.
  •   One should be able to explain why a measure goes up or down and what’s behind the trend.
  •    Process control is very important for ongoing success.
Aditi Chopra is an experienced leader in the software industry.
She is a consultant, writer and a leader.
 LinkedIn |  Web |  Twitter | Book

Monday, August 6, 2012

Ways to improve customer satisfaction

Many companies have a department in place that keeps a tab at customer sentiment and handles issues concerning customer satisfaction. When the company size is small, this aspect is handled well. However, as the company grows, customer gets distant from the core of the company. Customer satisfaction department needs to work harder in keeping a tab at customer sentiment in larger companies.

Here are some ways to improve customer satisfaction :

  • Provide a satisfactory support environment for your products and services. Customers like to be treated right, specially if they are experiencing problems. Bad customer support on top of problems is the worst combination.
  • Listen to customer complaints. If the problem cannot be addressed, be forthright about it. Otherwise, inform them about the possible solution and the time frame in which to expect a viable solution.
  • Set the expectation clearly. False promises don't help. Not being able to explain why the problem occurred is easiest way to decrease customer satisfaction.
  • Provide forums or communities where customers can chat with each other and learn from their experiences. A company representative should be part of these communities such that they can learn from the discussion and henceforth improve the products and services.
  • Finally, make customer satisfaction a high priority, it will only improve the bottom-line.

    Aditi Chopra is an experienced leader in the software industry.
    She is a consultant, writer and a leader.
     LinkedIn |  Web |  Twitter | Book

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Attention to details

I am not a detail oriented person and as soon I hear the word, I run...But we all know that devil is in the details. I find that in order to overcome this weakness or challenge, one must break details down into manageable parts and tackle one part at a time. This makes the task look not so detailed and overwhelming.

For example if you want to review a document, first identify the areas that you want to review and set aside separate time for each of these areas. In one pass, review the document only for one area and don't even bother about the other aspects.

If people have other suggestions, I would love to hear them.

Friday, May 4, 2012

A word about ROI

If you are planning a process improvement initiative or already have one in place and are planning to roll it out to a larger organization, one thing you need to consider is the Return On Investment (ROI) of the initiative. 

ROI is often used for business initiatives in order to justify the spending on the project and how it relates to business's bottom-line. For some initiatives, calculating return on investment is straightforward by doing the money calculation. You spend a certain amount of dollars and you save dollars for business on an ongoing basis and therefore the returns are clearly identified. In other cases, the returns cannot be calculated in terms of money but it could be in terms of reduction in the man hours spent by employees. Reduction in man hours spent by employees in turn implies that their time can then be spent on other projects. In other cases, an initiative may not even result in saving in employees' time but could enhance customer loyalty which in turn improves overall business.

These are some of the examples I have quoted for you to think about how to calculate ROI for your initiative. It is very important to think through this aspect of the initiative before marching ahead with it.

Aditi Chopra is an experienced leader in the software industry.
She is a consultant, writer and a leader.
 LinkedIn |  Web |  Twitter | Book

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Communication is essential

We cannot emphasize enough the importance of communication in business process management. As process professionals, learning all communication strategies and pitfalls is a must. How you communicate, when you communicate and who do you communicate with makes all the difference. Following are some useful tips :

  • Communication helps in managing all the stakeholders' expectations. You ought to set goals upfront and communicate them in order to avoid any misunderstanding.
  • Targeted communication is a must for effectiveness. Don't communicate everything to everyone, tailor it for the audience.
  • When there is risk in the project, communication is the key to mitigate the risk and ask for the right kind of resources.
  • Don't just communicate your needs, use appropriate communication to appreciate team's efforts, celebrate milestones and build morale.
  • Don't be afraid to be the whistle blower, sometimes it is needed.

    Aditi Chopra is an experienced leader in the software industry.
    She is a consultant, writer and a leader.
     LinkedIn |  Web |  Twitter | Book