Communication at the Core
We have a wide range of projects, from intricate web developments and extensive digital marketing campaigns to brand strategy and thoughtful design. We are a full-service agency and the one things that keeps us going is our clients.
As a Project Manager, I spend most of my time communicating (lucky for me I love to talk). Whether I am organizing an internal kick off for a new project, having a monthly review with a marketing client or pitching an idea to a new potential partner, understanding the best way to communicate is the most important thing I can do each day.
Here is how I tackle communication with both our clients and our internal team:
- Internal Meetings: In a world where we are glued to our screens, it’s important to be conscious of the impact of meaningful (and in person) meetings. Moving on from the days where agencies filled their calendars with meeting after pointless meeting, we like to have purposeful and to-the-point meetings. In order to accomplish this, you must have an organized agenda, a time limit to keep everyone’s attention and always end the meeting with action items to assign to your team members. This can be a powerful way to bring your team together, align on project goals and adhere to your timeline.
- Basecamp: As discussed in a prior post, we use Basecamp as our Project Management system. This allows us to create and house our project calendar, assign tasks to team members with deadlines and place all information that pertains to the client and project.
- Slack: As soon as a project is confirmed, I immediately set up a Slack #channel and invite all team members that are a part of the project. This allows our team to have an open space to discuss anything and everything on the project. While Basecamp serves as a more formal space for sending through official tasks and assigning deadlines, Slack gives our team the ability to check in on items, brainstorm ideas, give quick updates and keep the project moving along.
- Step One with a new client is establishing how they prefer to communicate. Every client is different. It’s up to the Project Manager to determine how frequent and what forms of communication will be best for that particular client.
- When in doubt, over-communicate. These projects are extremely important for all involved. Whether we are working on building a first website for a new company or building out a brand refresh for a fifty year old company, making sure you have communicated clearly and received all the correct information is key. This will help you stay on schedule and within budget.
- Keep records. A main reason we use Basecamp is that is easily leaves a paper trail of all communication. Clients can send through feedback, approvals, collateral, collaborate with us on calendars, you name it. These projects can move quickly, having your communication all in one place allows for easy reference.
No matter the size of the project, the budget or the timeline, the only way to successfully execute is to effectively communicate from beginning to end with both your team and your client.