4 Virtual PM Challenges

Kenneth has 14 years of healthcare experience in government and private industry. Over eight years of experience managing healthcare IT projects, operations, contracts, and personnel. His work experience includes project management, contracts and procurements, data analysis, claims adjudication, business writing, and business process modeling. Kenneth was certified in 2006 as a Project Management Professional.

Project teams are often able to work virtually. After all, you can code from anywhere these days--and with constant electronic communication, phone conferences and video conferencing, there is less and less reason to work in an office.

But what happens when the project manager is working virtually? If the project manager is physically separated from the project team, the stakeholders or the client, then they will have to overcome certain problems that are a bit different than the typical virtual worker. The virtual project manager needs to make sure he or she stays relevant even while not physically present on the project. This can be difficult in some situations, but the project manager must be ready for the challenge.

Challenge 1: Communicate Well
The first challenge is to make sure you can communicate well with others even though you are remote. A great deal of project management is communication, and this becomes challenging when you cannot walk around an office to talk to people.

Of course, many see the lack of an office as a great benefit to the project, but it does make it difficult to manage a project when there is no immediate feedback to your communication. Even talking on the phone is not the same thing as talking in a face-to-face manner. The virtual project manager must make sure that communications are provided in a timely manner and that there is…

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