Project managers tend to take quite a bit of flack from clients on a regular basis. Sometimes giving the manager a hard time might be warranted but in most cases these people don’t have control or production teams or deadlines. Treating a project manager is extremely important as they are the person in their office that represents you. Once you have lost a project manager due to poor treatment it can become easy for a company to put the worst team on your project or push your project aside for a bit. The following are just a few of the reasons you should love your project manager.
They Are In Your Corner
Your project manager might be the only one telling you “No” when it comes to your project. A great project manager allows a client to express their vision but then might give them a reality check. The fact is that in many situations that include content marketing or SEO, a client might not have a clear vision of what they want. A project manager is the translator to the production team of your wishes for a project.
Some Ways To Stay On The Good Side of Your Project Manager:
- Don’t berate them for missed deadlines as some project managers do not have power over a production team.
- Take time to ask them about personal things during calls to build rapport.
- Have a regular weekly checkup time. Project managers are swamped by emails from frantic clients. Not being considered a frantic or hard to work with client helps ensure quality of work on your project.
- Set up a face to face meeting or dinner to humanize your company/project.
Project Managers Are The Best To Ask For Advice
Project managers generally aren’t associated with the sales team in any way. Some project managers are given commission while others are just on salary whether a certain client leaves or not. When asking for direction it is important to ask for direction from your project manager. Salespeople are going to try to sell you on things that you might not need. Project managers want to keep that professional trust that has been built between manager and client. This lends itself to project managers letting you know what services or products that you will need or simply don’t need.
They Appreciate Clarity and Honesty
Nothing gets to a project manager more than a client saying they misunderstood directions in front of a superior at a meeting or on a call. Communication goes two ways so it is important to make sure all is understood before concluding a call or meeting.
Not being completely clear or lying to a project manager can lose their trust immediately. Lying to the project manager about deadlines or saying something that is untrue in order to place the blame on the manager can lead to a ruining of the relationship. The project manager has the good of the client and their agency to think about. Once a relationship has been ruined the manager has the good of the agency to think about which can lead to lower quality project performance or advice.
Clarity is extremely important when it comes to a project so making sure that your project manager sends you a meeting recap email can be a saving grace. Any detail that might be off can be corrected before any other steps of the project are taken. Client questionnaires can also help with this but this is more of a sales tool rather than project management tool.
Being a project manager is by no means an easy job. People generally don’t reach out to project managers if they are happy with the way things are going. This means that a majority of the interactions this manager has are trying to calm a client or explain something. A little bit of gratitude goes a long way with many managers. Your only proponent in a vendor’s or agency’s office is the project manager so make sure you nurture this relationship instead of ruining it.