Project portfolio management professionals know their important deadlines and deliverables, but what about the actual people on their projects? I recently read a CIO article about the importance of knowing the individuals on your team. When these interpersonal relationships are not nurtured, stakeholders can begin to get lax and avoid responsibility. Silos can pop up to block collaboration, and relationships can become toxic. Most importantly, projects can suffer.
If a team is fragmented, it can impact the ability to meet project goals. Individuals "phone it in" during meetings, miss deadlines, and blame one another. This can often happen when team members view one another as just a name, or assign characteristics based on assumptions. Project management methodologies require a unit to function as a team.
When the individuals on a project team get to know each other as individuals, collaboration and communication can improve dramatically. Successful teams listen to each others' ideas when they're brought up. These individuals break down walls or silos to ensure communication between functional groups. They also ask questions of each other, and share their knowledge with others. Most importantly, they acknowledge everyone's contributions to make each other feel valued. Understanding more about one another helps team members to recognize each others' talents and connect with one another.