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3 Ways to be a Better Communicator

Project Managers Deal With More Than Technical Issues

As blog author Dave Wakemen, PMP explains, it’s easy to get caught up in just the technical elements of being a project manager. But it’s not a stretch to say that part of being a project manager is being a people manager, and being an effective communicator is key to achieve the most from your team. Communicating is a key tool in the kit of a project manager, so making sure you know how to use it—and use it well—can make a huge difference in your team’s effectiveness.

The first of the three tips is to build communication into your everyday plan :

Project managers tend to get pulled in multiple directions. So instead of being the driving force behind the information flow, you end up reacting to the latest problem or sponsor demand. While you are never going to be free of these things, you can manage them more effectively by creating a communications plan. This can be as simple as having a daily status meeting to cover where everyone is, or as elaborate as a multilayered communications plan that accounts for interactions with sponsors, team members and stakeholders. Either way, start by planning for how you want to manage your daily communication, and your project management will get easier. 

 Be Specific, Make Sure Everyone Knows The Plan

The next tip? Be specific. It’s easy to assume that everyone is on the same page as you are, but more often than not, they aren’t. While you as a project manager might not have the technical skills to know every aspect of a project, you should be able to effectively communicate the goals the project is aiming for, and thereby can set specific objectives.

The third tip is to show empathy and support. Your team is pressured by the work, your stakeholders have pressure from their organizations, and it’s your job to recognize this stress and do what you can to ease it. More often than not, simply expressing your support and understanding goes a long way in building trust and a positive relationship.

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About Matthew Kabik

Matthew Kabik is the former Editor of Computer Aid's Accelerating IT Success. He worked at Computer Aid, Inc. from 2008 to 2014 in the Harrisburg offices, where he was a copywriter, swordsman, social media consultant, and trainer before moving into editorial.

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