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Working with Your Project Sponsor: 5 Tips | Video

Working with Your Project Sponsor: 5 Tips | Video

Your relationship with your Project Sponsor is crucial to the success of your project – and to your success as a Project Manager.

So, in this video, I look at 5 tips to help you get that relationship right.

This video is safe for viewing in the workplace.

This is learning, so, sit back and enjoy

Tip 1: Framing

What is the frame that your sponsor is thinking about?

  1. me (themselves)
    WAM: ‘What about me?’
  2. us (their team)
    WAU: ‘What about us?’
  3. us (the organization)
    WAO: ‘What about the organization?’
  4. them (customers, clients, regulators, suppliers, or any other outsiders to your organization)
    WAT: ‘What about them?’

Tip 2: Make Life Easy

Make Life Easy for Your Sponsor.

Always take responsibility. Nothing is more likely to annoy your boss than the feeling that you are trying to wriggle out of a problem.

Take the initiative where appropriate. Most of all, accept any feedback that your boss gives you and thank them for it.

Tip 3: Governance Deficit

The Governance Deficit…
Is your sponsor allocating enough time to your project?
If not: there are 8 approaches in our eBook.

Tip 4: Handling Difficult Sponsors

In our ebook, we also look at specific strategies for 6 types of difficult project sponsor. Here is a four-step process for handling difficult sponsors. A general strategy:

  1. Confidence and Competence
  2. Build Your Relationship a Little at a Time
  3. Acknowledge their Needs
  4. Recognition, Compliments, and Praise

Tip 5: Meddlesome Sponsors

How to handle a meddlesome sponsor who is too focused on minor details of your project. In our eBook, we look at ten ways a project sponsor can go rogue. This is the first of them.

This could be:

  • a trust issue – they don’t yet trust you enough
  • or a control issue – they want to be in control

One thing that works in both cases is to set up frequent checkpoint meetings. There, they can ask their questions of you. So, you can deal with those questions and keep your sponsor away from the team (and therefore not distract them)

Working with Your Project Sponsor

In our Kindle Exclusive eBook, Working with Your Project Sponsor, we cover five topics:

  1. Do You Know What your Project Sponsor Wants?
  2. How I Kept My Boss Happy Without Working Hard at It
  3. Eight Approaches to Engage Your Project Sponsor
  4. How to Handle a Difficult Project Sponsor
  5. Rogue Project Sponsor: What to Do when Sponsorship goes Bad

Get Working with Your Project Sponsor: How to build a great working relationship with your Project Sponsor, for the good of your project

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About the Author Mike Clayton

Dr Mike Clayton is one of the most successful and in-demand project management trainers in the UK. He is author of 14 best-selling books, including four about project management. He is also a prolific blogger and contributor to and Project, the journal of the Association for Project Management. Between 1990 and 2002, Mike was a successful project manager, leading large project teams and delivering complex projects. In 2016, Mike launched OnlinePMCourses.

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