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Effective qualities of a project manager

Reflect on the skills that project managers should have to be able to deal with the variety of project constraints.
OK so qualities to be a good project manager for me it starts with communication. My project management team that I have managed throughout my life don’t do the work but they communicate and they measure. They need to be trusted and they also need to trust the people they are working with. So it’s absolutely communication and finding ways cause in our world we’re a very busy company and quite often the people we’re talking to, the delivery of this project isn’t their only job and isn’t necessarily their key job. So you’ve got to find an appropriate communication mechanism. Primarily we do it by talking. We try and avoid the emails and all of that to get that.
The other piece for me that, and is why I have got a team of professionals working for me is the attention to detail, is the knowledge, is understanding the critical path, understanding where you’ve got your key gateways, your key constraints and also the intelligence then to build contingency and build all this protection into a plan as well so we can adapt to external environments, external changes the head winds that, that you invariably face when you’re trying to launch a complex project.
I would say the key one is communication because you’re very much the lynch pin between your project stakeholders, sponsors, your project team, you are constantly dealing with people and you’re also the person that has probably eyes on most things, you’ve got that sort of overview of what’s going on so you need to be able to ensure you’re getting that communication going up and down the chain and people know what’s going on, people know what’s happening, you’re managing expectations, you’re identifying and communicating any problems that might be arising so communication absolutely. I’ve mentioned people, working with people is really key. To be able to build those relationships and build trust with your team and also with your sponsors.
An important skill for a project manager is that planning and monitoring they need to be able to plan the project out to a realistic time line but also be able to monitor on a daily basis that the project team are able to deliver and they need to have that relationship with the project team that the project team feel comfortable to tell them if there’s an issue with time or money or risk so that the project manager can take corrective action.

Project management provides people with a robust set of tools that includes the ability to plan, implement and manage activities to accomplish specific objectives.

However, project management is more than just a set of tools; it is a result-oriented management style that places a premium on building collaborative relationships among the diverse cast of characters. Exciting opportunities await people skilled in project management.

Your task

Listen to practitioners talk about the skills of an ‘ideal’ project manager.
What kind of skills should project managers have to be able to deal with the variety of project constraints?


Cheng, M.I ., Dainty, A. R. and Moore, D. R. (2005). What makes a good project manager? Human Resource Management Journal, 15(1), 25-37

Crawford, L. (2000). Profiling the Competent Project Manager. Proceedings of PMI Research Conference, 3-15. Project Management Institute

El-Sabaa, S. (2001). The Skills and Career Path of an Effective Project Manager. International Journal of Project Management, 19(1), 1-7

Hodgson, D. E. and Paton, S. (2016). Understanding the Professional Project Manager: Cosmopolitans, locals and identity work. International Journal of Project Management, 34(2), 352-364

Llewellyn, T. (2019). The New Skills You Can’t Ignore.

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Project Management: How to be a Successful Project Manager

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