To be a great leader, first be a great follower

 

Being a great leader has a surprising amount in common with being a good follower. Whether you are leading a business, a project or a revolution, excellent leadership qualities will often develop from skills that you learned earlier in your career, often while following a great leader.

There is a great deal of crossover in the skills required of those leading a team, and the team members themselves. This is obvious in many project management scenarios, where both the project manager and the team members need to show openness, responsiveness, flexibility and excellent communication skills. There are several qualities of good followers that allow them to develop into inspirational leaders.

Good followers understand their role. They know exactly where they fit in and how best they can benefit their team. Good leaders are similar. The best leaders understand their role as leader, and recognise exactly where they can step in to support their team, make tasks easier, and move the whole team closer to their objectives.

Good followers listen. No team can move successfully towards their objectives unless team members are listening to and following instructions. However, listening is also a leadership skill. If anything, listening becomes more important when you are in charge of a project or programme where you will be receiving lots of feedback from different team members, staff and other stakeholders. Good leaders listen, process information and respond accordingly, using multiple sources of feedback to keep their projects moving forwards.

Good followers serve others. Within a team working towards a common goal, it is sometimes necessary to step up and do what needs to be done to support other team members. This is another “following” skill that is even more vital in leaders. The leader has a better overall view of a project and should be the first to step in and help when something changes and someone requires extra help or support.

Good followers are humble. They make their leader look good. And good leaders? They make their team look great. Humility allows leaders to step back and shine a light on others, give credit where credit is due, and make the whole team proud of their individual and collective achievements.

Good followers are loyal. They don’t criticise their leader or their project in public. They are able, of course, to disagree, debate and put forth alternative suggestions in private, but the world will see a united front. Great leaders do their team the same courtesy. Negative feedback happens in private, and with the sole aim of reaching a solution.

Good followers grow into good leaders. It is easy to think in either/or terms when it comes to leaders and followers, but in practice, most leaders grow into their roles over time. Being a member of a successful team is excellent training for future leaders. Often, it is only by observing how things work from the inside that we truly appreciate what it takes to lead a project or programme to a successful outcome.

 

To discover how Verto gives you more management information at your fingertips contact us for a demo!

 


Understanding Verto: VertoGrid Data Collaboration Platform

 

 

 

In this edition of Understanding Verto, we discuss VertoGrid.   VertoGrid is an innovative platform for clients to share and collaborate on projects with a centralised reporting framework.  This extremely powerful functionality is a first for Verto and with VertoGrid we are leading the charge in improving joint working. We recognise the increasing need to work together more creatively to deliver sophisticated programmes which go way beyond spreadsheets and manual systems.

Next-level connectivity

VertoGrid was originally conceived to help STP (Sustainability and Transformation Plan) clients improve communication to work together. The aim is to transform health and care services by bringing together different organisations – local authorities, NHS Trusts, CCGs (Clinical Commissioning Groups), voluntary and independent sector partners, GPs and primary care colleagues. It soon became clear that any business would benefit from the kind of connectivity VertoGrid enables.

Now, our clients can use VertoGrid to work together on any project. Councils can work with other councils; a CCG can work with a Trust and so on across both public and private sectors. VertoGrid connects you with your collaborators for faster, more flexible project management. It works by invitation only, so you only share data with the individuals you explicitly want to.

How it works

When users begin a joint project, one Verto site acts as the host and the entire project lives in that space. Collaborators are then invited to join the project and all work done on that project sits in one place. It follows the central Verto concept of a single version of the truth and any project is always the most up-to-date version. Importantly this also means there’s no duplication of effort!

An innovative approach to project sharing and reporting

One of the key features of VertoGrid is that it allows different users to work together without sacrificing their autonomy. Individual member organisations can maintain their own configuration, gateway processes, branding, system structure, risk management and project management methodologies, working as they always have done. VertoGrid pulls together common data elements between members and allows centralised reporting. For example, you can run a report that shows every current issue across all Grid participants.

Each client can still run their own suite of reports against their own data, the Grid reporting opens up a whole new layer which hasn’t been possible before.

Bringing together collaborators in this way helps speed reporting. VertoGrid replaces the manual, time-consuming process of bringing data together, it streamlines each project and prevents duplication, repetition and other issues that can delay a project’s completion. In short, it makes everything easier.

VertoGrid is collaboration like we’ve never done before, and the implications are significant:

  • Seamless connectivity
  • Single Version of the truth
  • No double-keying of data
  • Centralised Reporting

Enabling future collaboration

VertoGrid is the future of project management collaboration, with intuitive tools and powerful features that make it easier than ever before to coordinate work between multiple agencies and organisations without the need to alter existing structures or methodologies.

For more information and to see VertoGrid in action, contact us at info@vertocloud.com  or +44 (0)118 334 6200 for a demo.

 


Introducing Verto - The benefits of a complete project management system.

Introducing Verto

Project management can be about as much fun as going to visit the dentist. You’ve got a budget to worry about, a tight schedule to meet, a team to motivate and stakeholders to keep happy. Somehow, you must keep everyone informed, and make sure that they all are receiving the same information. It can be overwhelming!

Well, we sympathise with you. We established our company in 2008, and our first project was to evaluate a large business transformation programme that had been ongoing for 18 months. We found that the PMO was overwhelmed with emails, spreadsheets and many documents, resulting in poor communication between the programme delivery team and the stakeholders.

We realised that we needed to develop a cloud-based collaborative approach to get the project under control, and as a result, Verto was born.

Verto is our innovative cloud-based solution for programme and project management that uses one platform to bring the delivery and stakeholder community together.

It’s easy to use the platform, it gives you instant communication with your colleagues and provides updates in real time while managing your programmes and projects securely in the cloud. Verto provides the catalyst you need to implement improvements in efficiency and collaboration throughout your organisation. By using Verto, our clients have reduced emails by 40%, Project Management Office (PMO) costs by more than 25% and savings in project resources by around 30%.

By using Verto, our clients have reduced emails by 40%, Project Management Office (PMO) costs by more than 25% and savings in project resources by around 30%.

Verto provides two views to link your delivery community with your stakeholders. Vertopro allows stakeholders and the PMO to collaborate across the entire program. Vertogo delivers an individualised mobile-friendly view for project team members.

Vertopro is an organisational view of all projects and programmes in one place. It allows anyone who manages projects, budgets, timescales and generates reports to view information in real-time, including:

  • Milestone and task management (Gantt charts)
  • Risks, issues, costs & benefit management
  • Resource and timesheet management
  • Document storage and sharing
  • Chat and instant messaging
  • Alerts, actions and calendar management
  • One-click reporting
  • Performance planning

Geared entirely to the individual user, Vertogo gives a focused view of the jobs immediately at hand allowing you to prioritise what needs to be done. You can update your colleagues, team members, project managers in real time.

Verto will also send notifications and alerts directly to your phone, making sure everyone is kept updated and connected without the need for long email chains.

To solve the problems for organisations collaborating within a partnership (like STPs and ICS regions), we provide a version of the platform called Vertogrid. This enables collaboration across member organisations, whilst giving each organisation their own bespoke application.

Using Verto makes collaboration more straightforward and more efficient, helping you eliminate a lot of the potential pain points in bringing your project or programme to a successful conclusion. Try our 60-day Free Trial and see how Verto can support your organisation.


How Cloud-based Software Makes Project Management Easier

Here at Verto we understand the demands project managers face every day. No matter what sector you work in and the projects you’re responsible for, you’re in a constant cycle of planning, delivery and reporting.

You’re managing risk, people, performance, time, change and budgets.

You’re expected to know what’s happening with a project at any given time.

And you’re expected to make sure everyone else does too.

Cloud-based project management software, like Verto Go and Verto Pro, help you do all this. Quickly and easily.

 

Instant Access

We provide and maintain Verto on our secure servers and you access it from the internet. This means you and everyone else involved in the project can have instant access to your project’s data. Whenever you need it and from wherever you are.

So even if you’re working round the clock and only have your mobile with you, you’ll always be in touch

Instant Messaging

Verto has an instant messaging tool so you can easily keep in touch with everyone involved in the project.

You can update the whole team at the same time so they always have the latest information.

And you can message people individually to let them know exactly what you need them to do.

Automatic Document Control

Because all your data is stored securely in one place, everyone will always get to see the latest version of any file. Verto even has an automated document control feature that takes care of this for you.

Supporting Flexible Working

Flexible working may eventually become the norm as more and more organisations recognise the benefits it brings in terms of recruiting and retaining the best staff.

Cloud-based project management software has a key role to play here as it means you and your team can access your project’s data whenever you need to from wherever you are. Exactly what you need to work flexibly.

 

And there’s more…

Alongside the benefits that being based in the cloud brings, Verto has a whole host of other project management tools to help your PMO run smoothly.

Things like free automatic updates that mean you’re always working on the latest version of the software, tools to help you manage risk and best practice templates, all save you time and make your job as a project manager easier.

To find out more get in touch.


21 Reasons Why You Should Use Verto for Your Project Management (as told to us by our clients)

We’re lucky enough to have received some great testimonials from our clients over the years.

And, like you, we listen to all the feedback we get and use it to help us continuously improve what we do.

Here are 21 reasons you should use Verto as your project management software, taken from what our clients have told us.

We’ve summarised their comments but you can see them in full here.

  1. Verto is a flexible management tool that will support your PMO.
  2. It means you can easily keep all your project documents up-to-date and secure in one place.
  3. It’s easy to navigate.
  4. Verto gives senior leadership improved visibility of projects across the whole organisation.
  5. You can easily see exactly what is going on in a particular business or service area.
  6. Everyone involved in the project can access the system to view and update it as appropriate.
  7. It removes the risks of silo working and makes it easier to work collaboratively.
  8. It will help you improve communication.
  9. It will help you improve accountability.
  10. It will help you improve stakeholder involvement.
  11. Verto will give you a clear view of all project budgets.
  12. Verto will give you a clear view of all project risks and help you manage them effectively.
  13. Verto will help your PMO allocate their time more efficiently and effectively.
  14. Verto is preset with best practice templates and controls to help ensure the integrity of your data.
  15. Its reports are quick and easy to customise, update and run.
  16. It will help you produce your corporate and strategic plans.
  17. We can tailor Verto to your exact needs, for example by creating bespoke reports.
  18. Verto gives you automatic document control.
  19. It’s good value for money.
  20. We’re continuously improving Verto’s scope, tools and functionality.
  21. Verto is backed-up by fantastic support from a first-class team.

 

For more information on how Verto can help you please call us on 0844 870 8785 or send us a message.

With thanks to Brent Council, Camden Council, Cheshire West Council, Denbighshire County Council, Gloucestershire County Council, Harrow Council, Horsham Council, Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service, Basildon Council, Newham Council, Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead Council, Wolverhampton Council, York Council, Central Eastern CSU, Thurrock CCG and Basildon CCG.