Managing a client’s project is an intricate balancing act requiring strong communication, organization, and problem-solving skills. What are the key components to successful project management? Why do some agencies excel while others struggle to keep up? The key to successful project management is having a client-centric focus.
While managing a project as a branding agency, it is important to utilize clear and consistent communications with the client. Having one point of contact communicating with the client throughout the entirety of project helps to facilitate this consistency, and allows the agency to more effectively and efficiently move the project along. Continually remembering that the client is busy juggling a variety of different tasks and vendors, a single point of contact will ensure their time is persevered as much as possible. One point of contact simplifies the communication process, eliminating the need for the client to learn the internal structure of their agency or which questions need to be answered by which contact. This level of comfort, in knowing that they have someone that is their advocate within the agency on the day-to-day operation of the project, creates a mutually beneficial relationship that the project manager will develop with the client, making for smooth transitions and an understanding of communication styles and needs.
Once there is an established point of contact, the agency will need to communicate with the client as they would with their own team … with respect and integrity, while always being transparent. This sounds very simple, but it can go a long way through the project timeline and help to build and foster a longstanding relationship that will go beyond just the one project. By instilling transparency in the communication process there won’t be unrealistic goals and deadlines set for the project. When the lines of communication are understood to be transparent, both the agency and the client are going to be much more successful in developing and adhering to expectations.
Together, with the main agency point of contact, the client can set the project up for success from the onset by getting involvement and buy-in from a large, diverse team within their own Company – making sure to include all key decision makers, such as executives who might not be involved in the project day-to-day but have a final say. Setting a clear strategy and getting everyone to agree and sign-off on it before creative work is started will lead to a smoother process with minimal setbacks due to a lack of alignment, saving valuable time and persevering budgets.
There is always pressure surrounding Brand teams when it comes to a new product launch or any branding initiative. Working with an agency that has a process designed around the client’s perspective means that the complexities of any project can be consistently and effectively managed and communicated. In a world of complex trademark law and demanding creative expectations, the simplest things like agency/client communication can go a long way in making sure that optimal, ownable Brand identities are the result of every project.