Project managers must complete each project phase with due diligence, including the project closure. Tying the loose ends, in the end, would give you some valuable lessons to take to the next project. Your team, boss, and organization would appreciate your professionalism. In this article at the Digital Project Manager, Patrice Embry shares 7 ways you can make a successful project closure.
7 Commandments of a Project Closure
Even after a project closure, clients can haunt you regarding an incomplete deliverable. You would have to rewind and call up the team members. This would affect the deadline for the new project and would incur a cost to the company. Here are the 7 commandments of a project closure you must follow:
- Checking Every Task and Timeline: With tight deadlines and multiple tasks, you can miss critical tasks. If you have skipped any, set yourself a reminder, talk to your team and be transparent with the client.
- Remembering the Items on Hold: If you have put items on hold, remember to work on them. Categorize the items that are as per your scope and decide which are optional. Keep the to-do, in-scope items available in front of you to intimate the team when the time is ripe.
- A Thank You Note and a Souvenir: The team has been working alongside you all this while so acknowledge their hard work. Mention each member or team to make it sincere and praise them for the efforts they put in. The remote employees cannot join in the project closure celebration. Send them souvenirs as a token of appreciation.
- Closure Confirmation and Feedback from Clients: Confirm with your clients about the closure. If there are unsolved issues like broken links and user access, help them out. Companies do not prefer project managers openly asking clients about feedback. However, if you have a rapport with them, their unbiased feedback would allow you to see things objectively. Pose a neutral question that does not break any rules or agreement conditions.
- Reflecting on the Tasks Done: Always reflect on the goals you have achieved and the tasks that were hard to do. Majority of the team members do not want to come up with questions or complains upfront. The best way is to conduct an anonymous survey with multiple-choice questions. You will get to know the real problems without making anyone uncomfortable.
- Closing In-House Processes: The company leased or bought software license agreements for the project. Ensure that you have closed all these accounts to prevent your company paying for those after the project closure.
- Pausing for a Breather: Though another project is in the pipeline or you have already started working on one, take a break. Let your mind relax and take in the sweet joy of the project closure. Disconnect yourself to rejuvenate and start the new project with fresh energy.
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