Projects enable archivists to undertake roles that differ from their usual positions and are training grounds for leadership. Team members likely have other responsibilities in addition to their work on the archival project. Identify gaps in skills or resources, and then begin to locate people to resolve staffing issues. Determining basic team member roles up front allows projects to move forward with vision and vigor.
Archival project managers can create highly functional teams that embrace change, honor individual diversity and contributions, and demonstrate good faith and goodwill. There are many aspects of team-building to consider, including the fundamentals of team size and composition.
Delivering a project on time, on budget, and with quality doesn’t always mean it’s successful. And even if expectations of cost and speed are met—or were unrealistic—stakeholders are the final judges of the project. In their eyes, the project may be late, over budget, or inferior quality.
Winter is my favorite time to prepare for the year ahead. Regardless of when the fiscal year ends, the end of the calendar year is a natural point in time for us to take stock of the year that’s passed and prepare for the next twelve months. This is an opportune time to review goals for the year ahead and what it will take to get there.
Whether you’re undertaking a grant-funded project or a project being done in-house, project management principles should be applied. Most museums and other historical organizations don’t have a project manager on staff, and the idea of project management can seem overwhelming.