Tweetfacelinkblogpodoogle

Communication was always the key differentiator for good project managers but what is ‘new’ in the world of effective communication in this modern ‘social’ and ‘distributed’ world – what do ‘real’ project managers think?

‘Like most project managers, I have had both successes and failures in my projects. In post project analysis communication is still at the heart of both success and failure. In my discussions with project managers, I hear the same thing on every project, regardless of the project size, what has doomed the failed projects is not learning how to effectively communicate with the intended audience, ensuring that each communication is complete and understood’

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And others felt that in this ‘new’ project world there was a ‘new’ challenge (and presumably then, opportunity):

‘Communication skills become even more important as the Digital Generation comes of age in project management’

‘As project managers we learn there are many ways to communicate, however the most effective communication is face to face and this is where I see problems with the digital natives. They have grown up with casual communications across all types of media, but lack the maturity and understanding to manage formal business and face to face communications with diverse audiences’

‘For anyone who is looking to become a successful project manager the ability to learn and practice communicating in all types of media is important, but face to face communication is critical’

Just take a look at these recent statistics:

Facebook continues to grow (numbers from earnings call for the first quarter of 2013) –

  • Daily active users have reached 665 million
  • Monthly active users have passed 1.1 billion for the first time
  • 751 million mobile users access Facebook every month
  • Mobile only active users total 189 million

Twitter is the fastest growing social network in the world by active users according to a 2013 GlobalWebIndex Study –

  • 44% growth from June 2012 to March 2013
  • 288 million monthly active users
  • Over 500 million registered accounts
  • Twitter’s fastest growing age demographic is 55 to 64 year olds

YouTube (from YouTube’s own blog) shows its reach into our culture (and our time) –

  • 1 billion unique monthly visitors
  • 6 billion hours of videos are watched every month
  • YouTube reaches more U.S. adults ages 18-34 than any cable network

Google+ is making an impact on the social media universe and is now the second largest social network

  • 359 million monthly active users according to a GlobalWebIndex study

My personal favourite (feel free to send me an invitation to connect) LinkedIn, which is the largest business network

  • Over 200 million users

Throw in webinar tools and instant messaging and podcasts, blogs, and a whole bunch more that are no doubt ‘really hot’ but that are currently passing me by (where is a Gen Y when you need one?) and you get a whole lot of new and old ways to communicate as a project manager.

That seems to be the essence of the problem, communication has always been a challenge, even when you had only a few ways of doing it, but now there is an explosion of means and project managers are confused over what to use and when. Dealing with the mass of traditional and social communication channels is causing problems.

‘I want to keep with all the new ways of ‘talking’ to my team and stakeholders and not miss out on a better way of providing updates, reports or team exchanges but I just don’t have the time to learn all the new stuff without dropping other important things’

Are you feeling the challenge of the ‘Tweetfacelinkblogpodoogle’ world?

 

The above is an extract from ‘Real Project Management’ published by Kogan Page (2015) Amazon – you can also find out more with the PMI hosted webinar http://www.projectmanagement.com/webinars/296120/Real-Project-Management I presented based on this book.

I will explore this subject in a lot more detail in my new book ‘The Social Project Manager’ due to be published by Gower in December 2015 https://www.gowerpublishing.com/isbn/9781472452221

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