Blow your team away with the skills you bring to the table as a project manager. Many teams in IT suffer from poor leadership and having to strive for goals that have not been clearly defined. Your team will never have that problem though, not with you on the job, especially not when you command the dynamite skills that Tristan Wember highlights in a blog post at Leadership Thoughts. He says the top three project management skills you need to have are the following:
- Stakeholder management
- Managing risks
- Planning and control
The web of people who hold a stake in your project is intricate and expansive, from your immediate project team to accountants and sponsors. Then there are people directly affected by changes you intend to implement, such as team leaders and administrators. As a project manager, you must be able to understand that everyone with a stake in your project will approach it with a different perspective and with varying levels of enthusiasm. It is up to you find the best way to communicate with these people to get everyone on board with what needs to be done. Managing risks can be a challenging skill to develop for the simple reason that projects come in such different shapes and sizes. Being able to conceive of possible problems and solutions to those problems in the most unorthodox of situations is something that largely comes from experience, though having the aforementioned stakeholders for support will lighten the load. Planning and control is the most obvious function of project management in that you are planning work to be done. All the same, Wember continues: The project manager also creates an environment where any change to the project plan is fed back. You take corrective action. You review and manage risks and issues, the attitudes and behaviours of stakeholders, and implement the communication plan. You report to your sponsor and other senior executives. And you start over again. You follow this cycle week in week out and over time you deliver parts of the project. Make the best of these three dynamite project management skills, and you will be sure to light a fire under your team.