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Outsourcing dev team    Project success
Helpful Tips to Guide Your Project Team Towards Great Success
Outsourcing dev team
Project success
Helpful Tips to Guide Your Project Team Towards Great Success
10 min read
10 min read
Embarking on a successful software development project requires more than an idea; it demands the right team. This comprehensive guide unravels the intricacies of selecting and leading third-party software development teams. Our insights can also be helpful when working with any team on your projects. Whether you're a business owner, founder, or investor seeking excellence in outsourcing, this guide is your roadmap to achieving project success. As you consider entrusting your project to a third-party software development team, understanding the fundamental components becomes paramount.
How Do You Identify a Team Capable of Achieving Goals?
First and foremost, let's discuss what excites managers, founders, and investors – what is the key to project success? Did one of you originate the project idea? Or perhaps it was driven by an investment? Technology, maybe? Our experience with over 400 projects in 15 years indicates that these answers are incorrect. All conceivable ideas and their variations have been invented before us. Investors are primarily interested in profit. Technology advances faster than you can complete your project. Everything mentioned above merely applies to a team that can accomplish the goal.

Any company or team may declare that they can achieve their goals. So why do so many projects fail? The answer lies in the fact that not all teams are equally good, and there are criteria to evaluate their ability to succeed.

How do you avoid making a mistake when choosing the main success factor—the team? You could delve into the literature on psychology and management, but that's not the easiest or quickest way. There are standard and straightforward signs by which you can gauge the prospects of achieving results with a specific team.

You can assess the future team in two meetings. Your first meeting will likely involve a sales manager. Also, request the presence of a future project manager - a business analyst.
The sales manager will sell you the dream, and the business analyst will present the reality. By the way, the technician will "sell" you the process. Consider this and invest in "reality."
The sales manager will sell you the dream, and the business analyst will present the reality. By the way, the technician will "sell" you the process. Consider this and invest in "reality."
Additionally, engage in a conversation with the business analyst. They should grasp your idea, pick it up, and develop it, at least partially. All their development efforts should be directed towards generating additional profit or enhancing the value of your product. Listen closely, and you will discern whether this is your ideal team player.

Subsequently, ask the company to evaluate what was discussed at the meeting (your project). The estimate conveys much information beyond your direct development costs, but it's a separate topic.

How Do You Effectively Manage the Team?
As mentioned, the team is crucial to your project's success story. Most business owners or project leaders have a reasonable question regarding a dedicated software development team: How do you effectively manage this team?

If you have a professional project manager, the right approach is to delegate the tasks of setting, distributing, and controlling, stepping back from this management level. But what if you have a team of developers and need to manage them? You need all your soft skills to build a team correctly so the project doesn't fall apart.

The critical factors in this process include:

  • Trust in the team,
  • Flexibility in decision-making,
  • The ability to listen to what the experts you work with are telling you.
Trust is established based on the performer's level of responsibility and professionalism. Flexibility is built on trust, and listening is based on flexibility.
Here's a simple yet complex chain of leadership qualities that will make managing a team independently easier.

Want a straightforward example of what this means in practical terms? Try establishing a dialogue with your development team in this manner: "We need to get features A and B live by the end of the month. What might prevent us from achieving that?" Give it a try, and it will undoubtedly yield positive results.
The Proper Leadership Role Is Key to the Project's Success
The challenge in achieving project success is managing the team and choosing the proper leadership role.

Effective project management is no easy task when you have a startup and a remote team. In most cases, project owners must choose between two possible management positions: an idea generator or a project manager. In the first case, the project often falters due to its incompleteness, while in the second, it may suffer from the owner's burnout or a loss of team motivation.
"Idea Generator" Leadership Type
How do you know if you've taken the position of an idea generator? It's pretty simple. At every meetup, on every issue, you're brimming with ideas. You refine your project on the go, constantly improving it. You might even meticulously prepare with a scientific basis, vivid examples, and research to support your proposals. However, this can inevitably lead to losing the project's direction and an imbalance within the team.

If you have a startup, relying solely on the team's financial motivation is insufficient. While the team may work and possibly even work well, you'll find yourself constantly entangled in small tasks where your participation is necessary. This, in one way or another, will lead to burnout or a waste of the project budget.

At some point, you realize the team solely works for money. Everyone becomes weary of constant innovations and loses sight of the project's direction. You're on a direct path to draining the budget and project failure. If you sense this moment, exercise patience; a collapse is imminent.
Therefore, if you're an idea generator, you need to seek a level-headed individual within the team who consistently focuses on deadlines set in stone – someone who can say no.
Therefore, if you're an idea generator, you need to seek a level-headed individual within the team who consistently focuses on deadlines set in stone – someone who can say no.
"Project Manager" Leadership Type
The second leadership option is the "project manager," and it's not much better. If your leadership type is a "project manager," you maintain control, conduct excellent rallies, and provide verified reporting. Your team knows how many hours they should allocate and what they should work on, and they know where everyone will stand after a month of diligent work.

You might say, "This is the ideal model. Project success is guaranteed!" I would have agreed with you 20 years ago when I studied management systems and team rules. However, dreams collide with reality, and my experience indicates that, in this case, projects fail as often as with the first management option.

The reason for the failure of an ideal, almost scientific approach to management lies in its ideality. Leaders of such projects often struggle to recognize the point at which changes are needed, or sometimes, the project needs to be stopped, requiring a complete restructuring of the idea.

"Tunnel thinking" kicks in, and you reach your goal without deviating from the straight path. Unfortunately, our conclusions are based on observations of many startups, and we would gladly change them if we did not encounter such cases regularly.

How can you deal with it? Oddly enough, the answer is quite simple.
Both roles in your team (idea generator and project manager) should not be occupied by you but by two other people.
Your task is control and contemplation, quick reaction to critical decisions, and thinking about monetization, budget, end goals, and perspective.

Finding these two individuals is a challenging question. They could be within your team, from outside, accepted as partners, connected with the community, or from other possible options. Even within our teams, we share the roles of an idea generator and a project manager, attempting to offer the project owner the position of someone contemplating how the client can profit from the project. If our client succeeds, they will return to our team for new developments because they've found a symbiosis that brings success.

To sum up, in this article:

  • we explored the key elements that excite stakeholders and decipher the critical factors in achieving success;
  • we uncover the strategies for cultivating a collaborative and productive partnership with your chosen team;
  • we talked about the decisions project owners face when selecting between being an idea generator or a project manager when working with third-party software development teams.

In conclusion, your journey toward project excellence with a third-party software development team (or any other team you have to work with on any of your projects) requires a nuanced understanding of team dynamics and effective leadership. By finding the right balance between idea generation and project management, you are poised to achieve unparalleled success. Trust in the insights shared in this guide to make informed decisions and forge a symbiotic partnership that propels your project to new heights.
Discover your project's potential with ITUniversum, leveraging our 15+ years of experience in custom software development. Our services, aligned with the strategies discussed in our guide, encompass comprehensive project assessment, collaborative team management, and strategic leadership. Contact us for a straightforward and practical approach to achieving success in software development.
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