7 Project Management Tips For Learning And Development Professionals

7 Project Management Tips For Learning And Development Professionals

How Often Do Your Projects Go According To Plan? Tips For Learning And Development Professionals 

Do you find yourself wondering why your projects keep running into issues with budgets, timeliness, unrealistic expectations, or unforeseen project circumstances?

It is natural for stakeholders to want to rush through project analysis and design and start developing deliverables because that is when progress feels tangible. However, a few days of extra project planning up front can save weeks during the development stage—if done correctly.

Even if your stakeholders are riding the rapid design train, you should make sure the following 7 categories are adequately defined at the beginning of your project. Delayed decisions in these areas can derail progress and cause significant rework down the line, so it’s best to answer these questions ahead of time.

1. Project Background

The primary goal here is to figure out why you are doing this project in the first place, and how you will be able to tell if it is successful in the end.

Here are questions to get you started:

2. Analysis

If your eyes glaze over at the mention of analysis, you might be doing it wrong. This is where the real business value comes into play. Nobody wants to develop training "shelfware," so let’s take a little extra time to make sure the deliverables drive the necessary change the business requires.

Here are a few questions to get you started:

3. Technology And Tools

Whether the training is delivered in a classroom, through virtual technology, or online, you should define the needed technology and tools prior to design and development to ensure it all comes together seamlessly.

You may wish to add other questions to this list based on the technology needs of your project:

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4. Staffing

Now that you have a solid understanding of the project and its needs, you should be ready to gather the best talent to staff your development team. You should also identify ALL stakeholders and Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) early on—not just the key players—to avoid review cycle issues down the line.

Consider these questions, for starters: 

5. Development Approach

The development approach your team follows should be defined no later than the project kickoff meeting, but even sooner is better.

If your team hasn’t selected a development approach, consider adding these questions (as applicable) to your project kickoff agenda:

6. Implementation Support

Sooner than later, you should also determine the stakeholder’s implementation support needs—especially if train-the-trainer sessions or pilots are needed because those will impact the timelines.

Here are a few questions to consider:

7. Assessments And Evaluations

Defining assessment and evaluation items early will help your team stay on track as it produces a training solution that helps bridge gaps defined during the analysis phase.

Consider these questions at the start of your project: