15 Practical Tips to Improve Project Communication

15 Practical Tips to Improve Project Communication

Do you want to improve the communication between your teams on your projects? It’s possible to make it more manageable at the same time.
This article will share 15 tried and true tips to help you communicate effectively with your project team.

1. Use a milestone tracker
2. Use templates for emailsCommunication tip to Outlook users

3. Use checklists
4. During phone calls, stand up
5. Book meetings now
6. Register communications assets
7. Thank you notes
8. Use a meeting planner
9. Use email mailing listCommunication tip: Email mailing lists

10. Make a communications calendar
11. Meet up with yourself
12. Automate reports
13. Piggyback on others
14. Update your voicemail
15. Get some apps
Bonus Tip: Use video
How to improve communication in project-management management

1. Use a milestone tracker
It is an Excel spreadsheet that I use to track milestones. It lists milestones in one column, organized by project phase. It also contains the name of the responsible person, the target date, and any notes. There are four columns.
I color-code the column with the dates in red, amber, and green to indicate whether delivery is on time, at risk, or requires serious management attention.
Once the milestone has been achieved and the date has been reached, I change the title to Complete. This document is simple and effective in communicating high-level project dates with stakeholders. They love it!
Download the project workbook that I use (including the milestone tracker) here
2. Use template emails
How many times have you sent the same message to people? Templates can be used to create the covering emails for the here is the monthly reports’ and please find attached my expenses’ emails.
You can either create templates in your email program or keep a list of templates messages. You can then copy and paste them to save time typing them.
You can use these templates to create copy-and-paste emails to help you decide what to say when you’re taking a vacation from work.
Outlook users: Communication tip
Create your message in Outlook and save it as an draft. Do not add recipients. Click Ctrl+F to “forward” the message.
Office 2013 and later will require you to open the draft message before you can use Office 2013. Use Ctrl+F to place the cursor in one of the header fields, e.g. where you would place the address.
It will open a new message version. Your draft will remain in the draft folder until it is needed again.
Useful for:
Answering frequently asked questions
This is the barebones of your weekly project status email. You only need to fill in the progress
Messages that you send often, e.g. Invites to meetings of the project steering group

3. Use checklists
You can create checklists for tasks you do often, such as hosting Project Board meetings or project kickoffs. Checklists are used in hospitals and airlines to help people remember what they need to do and make sure nothing is forgotten.
You can pick a few tasks you are struggling with (for me, it was creating POs and then paying the bills) and make a checklist to help you not think about them anymore.
Next: How to create a simple checklist in 3 easy steps. I also keep a list of the daily, weekly and monthly tasks that I need to complete for project management. This ensures that I have all the basics covered.
Check out the checklists that I use.
4. During phone calls, stand up
This is a great idea! It works! You’ll be able to communicate faster if you stand up while on the phone.
5. Book meetings now
All face-to-face meetings should be recorded in your calendar for the year. Stakeholders are busy so make sure you block off their time for your project.
Next: How to overcome poor communication in project management through dealing with interference. Meetings can be moved or cancelled at any time. I have found that people will not complain if a meeting is taken from their schedule. However, organizers will have to organize a meeting at short notice. This can be stressful and difficult.