A Digital Experience Agency

Project Management in a Remote World

We’re not alone in embracing elements of remote work post Covid-19. Depending on how its measured, it is three to four times as prevalent as it was in 2019.  And last year, Redonk moved to fully remote. It’s given most of us more flexibility, but also presented new challenges in the world of Project Management. When your job involves keeping everyone and everything put together, how do you manage when we’re now all apart?  Here are things we’ve implemented along the way to our fully remote status that helps us stay productive and connected.

Morning Meetings

When we operated out of an office, we met every Monday morning to give our “Highlight of the weekend” and the Project Managers went over a list of open projects and upcoming milestones. This served two important functions – building camaraderie amongst colleagues and setting up for a successful week.

Now that we’re fully remote, we still meet every Monday morning with the same purpose, but we’ve also added in daily, quick morning meetings to our schedule. They’re our version of a morning scrum and typically cover what each team member is working on that day and if they have any blockers. This allows Project Managers to confirm projects are on schedule, and lets us know if anyone has availability that day and needs to be assigned work. Early morning face time helps ensure the entire team is ready to start the day on the same page.

Cameras On

Speaking of face time, we encourage team members to turn the camera on for most meetings. It creates a stronger sense of engagement and trust for all and can help build stronger connections. It better accounts for nonverbal communication and can create a more cohesive environment for the call, especially when starting and ending meetings. Plus, we love the occasional cat or kid videobomb.

Use Your Tools

When in the office, we had a little more “room for error” when it came to managing projects. We overheard conversations team members had with one another, or with clients. We could visibly see when someone was putting in extra hours to stay on top of their work load. You knew if someone was feeling under the weather or was leaving on a week-long vacation.

We’ve found that Project Managers need to be especially on their game now more than ever. One way to make this happen, is to use the tools we’re already armed with. We need to ensure all project timeline commitments are completely and accurately accounted for in Basecamp, so every Project Manager has visibility. Projects need to be opened and closed in a timely matter so we can accurately track project hours. We need to facilitate conversations in Slack (and in the proper channel!) when the path forward is uncertain. 

Be a Champion for Your Own “Best Practices”

One of the easiest things we can do as Project Managers, is to do the things we know improve the workplace in our new remote world. Turn your camera on for audio interactions – big and small. Follow the process across the board – whether its comes to requesting time off work, entering your hours, communicating in the various channels your agency uses, etc. Set the tone and encourage others to follow.

And like any good Project Manager – know when the process isn’t working for your team and be open to improvements. Who knows when the next big change is right around the corner.