A Project Manager's Guide to Stress Management
In any line of work you are prone to get stressed with your job. Stress is a reality for project managers. From meeting project deadlines to prepping for the PMP exam, project managers have a lot of responsibility and are held accountable for the outcome of the project. Project managers dismiss stress as an 'everyday routine'. However, what most PMs fail to realize is that it may eventually build up and wreak havoc on their personal and professional life.
The impact of stress on a PM
Stress will take a toll on one's health, career and relationships. Stress on a project manager will affect negatively on the entire team and may sentence the project to doom if not kept in check. In contrast, studies have shown that stress in a small amount can actually drive one's performance in a positive direction. Striking a balance between the two extremes and maintaining optimum levels of stress is the key to achieving project management success.
Here are a few ways you can manage stress in your team as a PM:
1. Recognize the first signs of stress
A drop in your concentration levels, sudden fits of anger, and overthinking are all indicators of stress slowly victimizing you. As stressful as a PM's job is, knowing where to draw the line is crucial. Identifying the factors that contribute to stress and taking up necessary remedial action is crucial. For instance, if your PMP prep is too demanding, opt for on demand PMP training
, instead of onsite classes. Alternatively, if you find yourself on the verge of burnout, meditation can help you keep your stress-levels under control.
2. Tackle every situation like a pro
Unpleasant and unwarranted situations can pop up anytime. What's important is the manner in which they're dealt with. There's an old saying: There's no use crying over spilt milk. Most PMs tend to dwell on the "what ifs" and focus more on past events rather than taking corrective measures. Project managers must maintain focus on the positives and continue keeping the project on task.
3. Engage in well-being practices
Remaining work-oriented is a good trait and is something you'll learn during your On demand PMP prep course. However, overdoing it will have negative results for your project. Personal development tools like resilience training, physical exercise and other renewal activities outside of work can act as great stress busters. Stress can be contagious. It is advisable to engage in well-being practices and encourage the same among other team members, in order to keep the entire team happy.
4. Use tools to make project management easier
Being disorganized may not help you set up an appropriate pace to meet the rising demands of clients. This is where management tools come in handy! Project management tools are the 'in' thing these days. It can help you create an organized work space wherein you can share work, centralize information access and oversee the functioning of the team. Enroll into an On demand PMP training course to learn more about the latest tools used by successful PMs
5. Switch to mono-tasking
Though multi-tasking helps showcase your versatility, it is advised that as a project manager you switch to mono -tasking. Focus on one aspect that is likely to yield better result. Parallel processing is something best left to the computers. Studies have shown that multi-tasking not only doubles the task-handling time but it also triggers an inflated stress response. Prioritize the tasks at hand and do it one at a time. Set realistic goals and define milestones that don't overlap to keep the stress-levels of the entire team under control.
From On demand PMP certification classes to improving conflict resolution skills, there are several ways you can maintain your stress levels. Know what works for you the best and find your way to manage stress.