Project management is the science and art of organizing the components of a project, whether the project is the development of a new product, the launch of a new service, a social media marketing campaign, or an employee training program.
Project management as a science and art has been undergoing a few transformations as a result of the countless stories of failed projects, cost overruns, and the canceling of projects that, unfortunately, created a 2 year sunk cost of your employee’s time.
Needless to say, these scenarios not only cost money, time, and lost opportunities but also have a long term impact on the overall morale of a workforce.
A project isn’t something that’s part of normal business operations. It’s typically created once, it’s temporary, and it’s specific. A project is, essentially, the vehicle to drive growth in your business.
Though there is no panacea to these inevitable outcomes, it’s important to take a look back on the cornerstones that define effective and success-prone project management.
Ultimately project management like most disciplines requires just that… discipline.
This discipline of mindset far outweighs any single tool, or management fad with a catchy name. The PMBOK or The Project Management Body of Knowledge is a good reference guide to begin, refocus, or sharpen your project management mindset.
Here are some key attributes of the Project Manager mentality:
- A solid understanding and vigilant re-education in the discipline, the science, and they are of project management and it’s key knowledge and practice areas.
- The experience and wherewithal to not attack a project with everything and the kitchen sink and instead being able to pick out the appropriate tools for improving implementation and the planning of the project.
- Understand the dynamics of a team, and serve as the glue that holds the members together.
- The ability to incorporate the new methodologies with the old on the fly.
- People, People, People! A knack for understanding how to communicate effectively with your team members as it relates to project changes, overall progress, and transcribing the overall vision for the project throughout it’s duration.
Overall the skills required to achieve the project manager mentality are: being flexible, possessing strong oral/written communications, the ability to think strategically and solve problems on your feet, team building and interpersonal skills, a sense of accountability for yourself and your team members, and finally the technical credibility to lead the project in question.