Using Social Media in Project Management

Michael R. Wood is a Business Process Improvement & IT Strategist Independent Consultant. He is creator of the business process-improvement methodology called HELIX and founder of The Natural Intelligence Group, a strategy, process improvement and technology consulting company. He is also a CPA, has served as an Adjunct Professor in Pepperdine's Management MBA program, an Associate Professor at California Lutheran University, and on the boards of numerous professional organizations. Mr. Wood is a sought after presenter of HELIX workshops and seminars in both the U.S. and Europe.

When people think of social media (SM), they usually think of Facebook, Twitter or Snapchat. But when it comes to using it in project management, the choices are a bit different.

The rationale for using SM in project management isn’t about being social but about improving the ability of the organization to get projects completed successfully—on time, on budget and achieving the intended outcome.

Part of a successful project is completing it in a way that fosters stakeholder support, acceptance and buy-in. In that context, SM can play a critical role—especially on projects that are geographically dispersed.

Using SM-based tools, project teams can connect, regardless of location, to discuss issues; collaborate; stay up-to-date on assignments; and more. Through SM, online dashboards, project announcements and status reports can be centrally maintained and be accessible by authorized stakeholders on a global basis.

Social media, like all tools, should never be used for the sake of just using the tool; the use needs to be justified in context to the needs of the organization. Since SM basically consists of cloud-based applications that enable the sharing of content (statically or dynamically) amongst people, it is difficult not to use SM within the confines of a project.

Email, texting, blogging and more are all basic forms of social media. Almost …


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