What Are The Characteristics Of An Effective Project Manager?
The success or failure of a particular project hinges largely on the project manager. If a sports center needs to be constructed by a particular date but remains unfinished when the day comes, the company will go to the project manager to ask why. On the other end of the spectrum, if a team was able to successfully come up with a solution to address a very crucial health concern of a government agency, the project manager is lauded for his efforts.
Project managers may work in different industries and assigned in various tasks that range from the simplest to the most complicated but they hold common traits that make them very effective in their jobs. One of these—and often the most crucial—are their leadership skills. In most situations, they are given a team of people to work with for a particular task. Whether they are leading a small group or a large one, project managers must be able to command attention, make team members listen and get everyone’s cooperation and commitment to the task at hand.
As leaders, they need to be able to delegate the responsibilities to people who are best suited for the task. There are bound to be challenges encountered in any project so project managers must be able to motivate the other team members to complete their work despite these difficulties. During crunch times, they have the ability to persuade people to devote more of their time and effort to a project to get the job done on time.
Effective project managers possess critical thinking and problem solving skills. They have to be able to look at a situation and analyze why it has become that way. This entails doing a little backward thinking to determine what led to the crisis. The more challenging part is for project managers to find solutions to the problem. Analyzing and knowing the reason why a particular task failed isn’t going to be enough. Project managers need to be able to get their thinking caps on and solve the problem so that the project can proceed.
Effective project managers have to be very organized. Most of the tasks that they are given to complete are under time pressure. Since deadlines have to be met, they must see to it that they have a calendar of activities that show the tasks that need to be done. They must also have milestones that showcase what needs to be accomplished at a particular point in a project to know if they are right on target. The ability to be organized is also important when it comes to appointing people to do particular tasks. A project manager knows that each member of the team has to do their share in order to get the job done.
Aside from being able to manage their time well, project managers should also know how to maximize the funds allocated for a particular task. A budget is usually given for each project and they need to make sure that the money is used correctly. They have to ensure that each penny is accounted for so as to reduce the possibility of it being wasted or used in ways other than what it was intended for.
Project managers have to deal with and coordinate the tasks of different people each day. They also have to report to the company’s management to update them on the status of the project. These require excellent communication skills. They have to be able to talk with their team members well and give clear instructions so that everyone knows what they need to do and avoid mistakes. They also have to be able to explain to management why something is delayed or why they need more funds. Because written reports are also required, project managers need to know how to get their thoughts organized on paper as well.
Project managers also need to have the skills to manage conflicts among team members. When people come together to work on something, there are bound to be issues among them which may or may not have anything to do with the task at hand. One may not like how the other speaks or another may feel that his way of doing something is better than what is proposed by someone else. An effective project manager has the ability to help people see past conflicts and get them to work together to get the job done.