Embracing a Fresh Start: Resuming Your Horizon Europe Project After Summer Vacation

As the days grow shorter and summer gradually gives way to the crispy fall, it's time to shift our focus to the exciting challenges that lie ahead and pick up your project where you left off after a well-deserved summer vacation. 

Author: Dora Leitner

Embracing this fresh start during the autumn period requires careful planning, renewed enthusiasm, and a clear work plan to ensure the continuous success of your project. We all know how stressful and busy the autumn period can get so we prepared some tips on effective ways to seamlessly resume your project post-summer break. 

1. Review Your Project Plan: Dust off your project plan and review the milestones, timelines, and objectives you set before your break. Take note of any adjustments needed due to unexpected delays or changes in circumstances. Ensure your plan is still aligned with the project's overall goals and adjust it as necessary. Discuss any open issues and potential delays with the responsible partners to be able to draft a mitigation plan if necessary. 

2. Reconnect with Your Team: It’s always a good idea to hold a seasonal kick-off meeting with your work package and task leaders to discuss the progress made during the summer and realign everyone's focus on the upcoming activities. It is also important to organize a similar internal informational meeting with your own team to outline the upcoming tasks and clarify roles and responsibilities while encouraging open dialogue and teamwork. 

3. Set Clear Goals: Set specific and achievable goals for the coming months. Break down your overarching project objectives into smaller, manageable tasks. This not only makes the project more approachable but also provides a sense of accomplishment as you check off completed tasks. 

4. Prioritize and Delegate: With a clearer perspective, prioritize tasks based on their importance and urgency. Some tasks may require your immediate attention, while others can be delegated to team members. Effective delegation not only lightens your load but also empowers your team to take ownership of their roles. 

5. Leverage Lessons Learned: Consider any insights gained during your time away from the project. Perhaps you encountered new perspectives, ideas, or methodologies that could enhance your project's approach. Incorporate these lessons into your project strategy to infuse fresh thinking. 

6. Keep calm and Embrace Flexibility: Recognize that unexpected events may still arise despite your best planning efforts. Adaptability is key to navigating these situations. Be open to adjusting your plans when needed while keeping your end goal in sight. Don’t be afraid to turn to other partners or your team members with issues out of your expertise.  

And if you want to deepen your knowledge and learn from our practical workshops, I encourage you to join our trainers for an online webinar on Horizon Europe Project Management and Reporting, on November 8th! You’ll get pro tips on keeping your project implementation on track, both as a coordinator and partner, deal with horizontal activities from open science, communication, dissemination to exploitation, and how to report your project to the European Commission. Check out the agenda and sign up here.   

Embracing a Fresh Start: Resuming Your Horizon Europe Project After Summer Vacation