What Makes a Project Sponsor Excellent

From advocating a project to minimizing risks, a project sponsor is as important as a project manager in spearheading a project in the right direction. Given the limited time-frames and resources at hand, and quality constraints a project sponsor can make sure that the deadlines and expectations are met. They can make all the difference between a success and a failure. Let’s take a look at how you can go from just another project sponsor to an excellent project sponsor.

Two-way communication

Most project team members identify a project sponsor with being someone who checks on the team on rare occasions. As someone who advocates the project, it is crucial that the project sponsor tips these meetings from rarely to the frequent scale. Keeping in contact with the project team and opening the lines of communication can allow project sponsors to understand the project dynamics better. This can help facilitate better decisions in line with changes in project needs and situations. Risks and crises can be averted by staying in the loop and proactively taking initiatives.

Resolving issues

More projects have gone downhill due to badly/inadequately resolved issues than we could count. As a project sponsor, you may not always be able to come up with the best solution to resolve an issue all by yourself, this is where you need to put your trust in subject matter experts. Being experts, they naturally know what is the best way to solve a problem, although if it seems unfeasible you could try asking them for alternate solutions that you can implement. What you should not do is to double-check what your SME suggests, as it can make it seem that you do not trust their decisions and weigh down their morale. Use your better sense of judgment to see whether or not an issue that is presented is valid.

Staffing and rewards

A project sponsor may not be directly involved in the staffing requirements of a project, but it is important that they evaluate and facilitate the same. You can review the staff in each project to see it has well-performing team members. It is equally important to see if the team members have the right incentives, so they are motivated to perform well. A project sponsor should ensure that there are feedback processes in place, and reward programs to incentivize team members who perform well.

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