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The most successful audio visual projects are those that have a great mix of coordination, regular communication and the right technical talent to install an infrastructure. An AV project manager who’s been in the industry for any length of time knows you need to ensure that there are no loose ends overlooked. Because in this industry, loose ends can mean an ineffective or even faulty system as a result.

The good news is, there’s always room for growth as an effective AV project manager. So, here are five tips you need to excel as one.

1. Meet with Decision Makers

Make a habit of getting in touch with decision makers at your client’s company or organization in a timely manner. More specifically, meet with the decision makers that are directly affected by your AV project. As an AV project manager, you need to know what the exact technical challenges are that your client is facing and what they ultimately want for their solutions.

Let’s say your project is for a college. You’ll want to meet with the dean or a departmental chair, not someone in administration who might not be as aware of the technical issues being dealt with. Meeting with decision makers early on clears up any pressing questions you or your technicians have about what the client’s needs are and the facilities you’re working with.

Not meeting with key players involved with your AV project not only impedes your progress, it can set an unpleasant tone for the whole operation.

2. Get Everything in Writing

You need a paper trail (electronic or in print) to document your project. An AV project manager can never have enough documentation, because it provides you with a history of the project’s progress, any legal matters associated, and establishes a concrete strategy for tackling system implementation.

This is where the value of an online freelance marketplace comes into play. With a host of tools for sending and receiving important documentation, you can send and receive reports, quotes, and invoices. What’s more, it’s simpler to keep track of contracts, milestone work history, and certifications.

3. Be Persistent About Confirmation

There’s nothing worse than last-minute meetings wasting precious time that could be spent on completing an important project. Whether it’s regarding client confirmation of the current and next steps of the AV system’s implementation, or because the client is having second thoughts about certain aspects of your design, you can’t afford to be blindsided.

You need to avoid sticky situations where your timeline is derailed by the client needing essential information about the progress of the system. The solution is to involve them in the decision-making process, constantly keeping them up-to-date and acquiring their confirmation of the steps taken to implement and train their staff in using their system.

4. Consistent Client Buy-In

Getting your client’s buy-in goes hand-in-hand with meeting them early on in the process and maintaining open communication with them. If you’re effective with client buy-in strategies, you will be crystal clear on the expectations, potential challenges and feasible solutions for them.

You want everyone to be on the same page, ideally, for the duration of an AV project. While you can’t account for every roadblock that might happen, having client’s consistently buy-in along the way makes your directions for your technicians more streamlined.

5. Get a Definite Signoff for the Project

It’s just as important to meet with decision makers at the start of the process as at the end of the process. You want to assure your client and their organization that you have followed through on your promise and can smoothly transition into giving them support with the new AV system.

Signalling project completion should be treated with same weight as staying on track with a project. When you get a definite signoff for the project, you can keep all expectations clear so the client and the freelancer stay happy.

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Paul Weatherhead

Paul Weatherhead

Prior to founding AV Junction Inc., Paul worked for a tier one AV systems integrator in an operational management capacity for 10 years. His knowledge and experience have helped him oversee hundreds of system integration projects in a variety of industries. Paul’s leadership skills as matched by his sense of humour and easygoing nature. When he’s not at work, you can find him outdoors, exploring new places or spending time with family and friends.

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