How to manage projects, virtual teams AND still have time to do your own creative work – Part 1

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There are many reasons for creative talent to take the plunge and go out on their own, and from my experience of managing freelance talent – creative freedom ranks high on the list.  But managing projects, overseeing virtual creative teams, and dealing with client requests often means they end up doing everything BUT the creative work.

Getting bogged down with managing multiple projects can leave you frustrated and tapped-out. So how do you carve out the time do your own creative work, while keeping your project and team on track?  Here are 5 suggestions:

1) Find the right team
Putting together the right team can make all the difference between a smooth running project and one that’s a nightmare to manage.  Start by defining your role (based upon your strengths) at the beginning of the project and recruit team members that compliment your skill set, work style and personality.  For example if you’re more of a big-picture creative, consider bringing a detail oriented designer or assistant on board.

2) Create a Project Blueprint
Your Project Blueprint will be your roadmap and taking the time at the start of the project will go a long way to ensuring it runs smoothly.  It should contain the following:

– Creative objective
– Deliverables
– Project scope
– Outline of phases
– Timeline

Schedule a meeting with your entire creative team (or conference call if you’re not if you’re in the same city) and get each member to contribute to creating the Project Blueprint. This process should ultimately result in each person verbally accepting their role and responsibilities to the group and project. This will engage the team, firmly establish who’s doing what and act as an incentive for each to deliver what they said they would. E-mail the Project Blueprint to the entire team afterwards.

For Justine's 3 other suggestions, stay tuned for Part 2 of "How to manage projects, virtual teams AND still have time to do your own creative work."

Justine Clay is the founder of Pitch Perfect and teaches creative talent and entrepreneurs the business, interpersonal and project management skills they need to transform their creative ideas into paying projects and lasting professional relationships. To sign up for her newsletter, or learn more about upcoming workshops, please visit


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