For this week’s Expert Thoughts segment we interviewed Michelle Dale, CEO of Virtual Miss Friday. During the interview Michelle talked about various aspects of project management, shared some thoughts about remote work culture and gave us insights into habits that make her a very productive entrepreneur.
You can read the detailed interview with Michelle below:
Michelle Dale – CEO – Virtual Miss Friday
- What’s your view on project management?
Project management is an absolutely essential part of seeing any project, idea or venture through to the finish efficiently – addressing all details, particularly if it involves coordinating people and sub-tasks.
- Your thoughts on Remote Work and how it’s changing the world?
- One of the biggest project management challenges is dealing with risk. How do you handle this?
I think the best way to move forward is to not focus on the risk or expect things to go wrong, but to ensure you have an experienced project manager who is personally invested into the outcome of the project, and put systems and procedures in place to quality control at every level of the project until completion. Understand that if there’s a problem that presents itself, turn that into a challenge and get busy on working towards a solution.
- What are some of the biggest challenges faced by your clients at VMF?
By far I would say the biggest challenges are focussed around sales and marketing. Sometimes it’s hard to make that shift between what we know works traditionally offline, to what happens online. For example, business owners love to see ROI – but it’s often less accurate to measure when using something like social media as a tool. Building an audience in social media doesn’t always allow you to see the sale coming directly from those efforts, especially when social media is all about building relationships and authority – sales come from that in multiple ways.
- How does VMF help clients deal with these challenges?
We do our best to share as much data as we can with the client from we have available for them, in terms of increase in audience, increase in traffic to their site, increase in engagement, click through rates and so on. It’s also very important to educate the client on what we’re doing and what we can measure, and that helps to manage their expectations better.
- You’re obsessed with being productive all the time. Can you give us some tips on productivity?
When I’m working on a project I create what I call an ‘evolving idea map’ which is a wall with all my project mapped out and the ideas I have in front of me, and instead of rigidly sticking to a project plan with a step 1, step 2 kind of process – if I find there’s a stage of the project I’m having difficulty with, I’ll move onto another area of the map to keep the project moving continuously while the solution to the sticking point is put to one side, as generally the solution will come as the project moves forward, but if you prevent yourself from moving past that point because you don’t have the answer right away, it can stall everything. I also listen to my body, and make sure I take a decent break in the afternoon to recharge my batteries – for me, productivity doesn’t come from feeling tired or using something like coffee as a substitute for staying focussed and alert.
- What are your ‘top 3 daily habits’ that make you able to serve VMF so efficiently?
- Outsourcing is a big trend now – remote working greatly benefits from Outsourcing, particularly Software Development. Keeping this in mind, please suggest 3 things that a person/company can do to start walking in the direction of remote environment?
Thank you Michelle for sharing such insightful information with our readers. I’m sure they’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading about your experiences and will definitely leverage the tips and tricks you’ve shared.
Would you like to share your thoughts on agile method with the community? Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll schedule an interview for you.
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