How to Organize Project Teams for On Time, On Budget Results

  • from ITtoolkit.com

Image of business people in a meeting depicting the need to organize project teams.

Project teams are typically formed for a single and specific purpose... to complete assigned projects according to plan and budget.  But that's only part of the story.  Every project team must have a mission (that's stating the obvious), but without an effective, suitably "aligned" organizational structure, that mission may be little more than a lofty goal - not a realistic objective.  That's why "goal oriented team organization" (G.O.O.) is so useful.  Read on to learn more.

The project team is a working unit of individual parts, sharing a common goal, achieved through the structured application of combined skills. Unity of purpose is essential to success, but team unity is not a given. Teams start off as a unit, but once the work begins, the individual "parts" have minds of their own. And, in fact, individuality and creativity is a key component of the team dynamic.   (Also Read: Keeping Project Teams Active and Motivated)

Getting Started: 5 Keys to Team Organization

While team mission, composition and structure will vary according to project specifics, certain standards must always apply if a team is to be productive and successful. As project teams are organized, five (5) key variables can be used to determine overall team "organization":

  1. Team Member Sources.  Can you hire contractors and/or consultants, and if so, will this help you get the project done on time and on budget?
  2. Organizational Boundaries.  The need to reach out to other organizational units to complete the project. i.e. Do you need to cross organizational boundaries to get this project done? If so, what are the organizational implications? How will resource conflicts be resolved?
  3. Resource Availability.  The need to allocate resources based on full-time availability, part-time availability, and multi-role overlay (one person having multiple responsibilities). i.e. Do you need a full-time, dedicated project team? Can resources handle multiple assignments without damaging burn-out?
  4. Required Expertise. The use of specialized resources, available for interim, ad-hoc project work without official assignment to the project team. i.e. Do you have access to specialized skills? Can the project be managed with a core team and ad-hoc assignments as needed?
  5. Organizational Options. How can available and required resources be most effectively organized to maximize unity of purpose, while leveraging specialized skills and personal creativity?

Time for a Team: "Goal Oriented Organization" (G.O.O.)

When it doubt, let your "goals" lead the way.  Goal-oriented organization (G.O.O.) uses defined project goals and objectives as a guideline for team structure and composition (ensuring that team structures are properly "defined, aligned and approved" considering key project definitions).   This approach is used in order to increase the likelihood of project success,  maximize productivity and minimize project "resource-related" risk.

  • To produce the required deliverables according to plan.
  • To use structured communication mechanisms (meetings, status reports and related practices) to promote information flow, informed consent, decision escalation, and problem resolution.
  • To cooperate and collaborate, treating all team members with courtesy and respect.
  • To follow assigned work responsibilities, minimizing redundancies, and leveraging complementary skills.
  • To promote a positive work environments designed to encourage an open exchange of ideas, dissent and feedback.

Work Smarter

Even under the best of circumstances, management is a challenge. When you learn to fast track, you’ll learn to work smarter, not harder. And that’s the value of every lesson, resource and template available at Fast Track Manage Learning. We teach you how to fast track your way to successful projects, committees and more. Learn More


Some closing thoughts….

Team requirements will depend largely on the project characteristics and the skills needed for planning, execution and implementation. The team approach to project delivery is the norm due to the diversity of business, management and technical skills required to complete most projects. As such, project size, scope, visibility, complexity, cost and risk variants will determine the number of resources required, and the related skills. The first step to team success begins with initial organization…. to assemble and organize available resources capable of working together as a whole through the integration of individual skills, talents and personalities.

Source: Unless noted otherwise, all content is created by and for ITtoolkit.com


About Us

Right Track Logo

ITtoolkit.com staff writers have experience working for some of the largest corporations, in various positions including marketing, systems engineering, help desk support, web and application development, and IT management.

ITtoolkit.com is part of Right Track Associates, proprietors and publishers of multiple web sites including ITtoolkit.com, Fast Track Manage, HOA Board List and more. We started ITtoolkit.com in 2001 and have continued to grow our web site portfolio, Toolkit products, and related data services. To learn more, visit us at Right Track Associates.

Stay Informed

Useful information without inbox overload.

we do not sell our list

subscribe now
I.T. Service Planning The Fast Track Project Toolkit Start For Free

The IT Service Strategy Toolkit teaches you how to fast track IT service planning using the time-saving “service strategy process”. The goals are simple... to manage IT departments, services and projects in a common-sense manner, to align business and technology, and realize maximum value, acceptance, and utilization - all at the lowest overhead costs. It’s all about adding value, in less time and with greater success. Get lifetime access to a growing IT service curriculum of lessons, videos, reference materials, templates and more. Start for free.

Committee Management The Project Committee Toolkit Start For Free

The Project Committee Toolkit teaches you how to manage successful committees using the "committee concept" process. Committees are one of the most effective ways to organize, deliberate and make decisions. But too often, committee success is hampered by conflict and bureaucracy. When you follow the committee concept process, you’ll learn to avoid these pitfalls and ensure that your committees are properly formed, managed and staffed. Get lifetime access to a growing committee management curriculum of lessons, videos, reference materials, templates and more. Start for free.

Project Management The Fast Track Project Toolkit Start For Free

The Fast Track Project Toolkit teaches you how to deliver on-time, on-plan projects using "strategic project fast tracking". The fast track approach is a time-saving methodology, designed specifically for "real world" project circumstances - when you are being asked to do more than time and resources may allow. Fast tracking is the way to work around these obstacles and deliver prioritized results. Get lifetime access to a growing project planning curriculum of lessons, videos, reference materials, templates and more. Start for free.