Best Project Management Skills for Professional Growth

Running projects without good management is a false economy.”

Today all big and small-size companies are running their projects through a proper management team and workforce. Good project management holds the team and client together and it can also help to navigate through the ups and downs, catastrophes of projects, and clashes. PMI (Project Management Institute) says that organizations that undervalue project management report an average of 50% more of their projects failing outright. It also found that organizations using any type of project management methodologies and strategies are better at meeting budget, staying on meeting scope and schedule, quality standards, and expected benefits. Project management is far more than simply tacking deadlines and setting a budget.

Good project managers ensure that the initiatives and goals are strategically aligned, the project has stakeholder support, and all the project-related people are on the same platform. Project managers who hold a PMP certification (Project management Professional) can help in realistic project planning to achieve goals within budgets and timelines. Without good management, a project can quickly get off track before it has begun.

With the help of project management, managers set clear goals and focus on objectives/priorities. It also helps to oversee the project plans and task breakdowns as many teams may not notice potential risk factors. One of the most crucial reasons to pursue project management is to align projects with a strong business strategy and offer vital opportunities to grow.

This article is all about project managers and the best skills required to get desired professional growth in business with project management.

What is a Project Manager?

A project manager plays a vital role in any organization via planning, monitoring, executing, controlling, and completing projects. They are responsible for the entire project score, workforce, project team, resources, and the success and failure of the whole project. Project managers are the professionals who are organized, goal-oriented, passionate, understand what projects have in common, and understand what is their strategic role in the success, learning, and change of any organization  Portfolio Managers.

A project manager is charged with several responsibilities that span the five project stages of the project life cycle (initiating, planning, executing, monitoring, and closing). Project managers are called change agents who make project goals their own and implement their skills and expertise to inspire a sense of shared purpose within the project team. They have a flexible job role as they can work well under pressure and are comfortable with any complexity and change in dynamic environments. They also can develop project management skills for professional growth to build trust and communication among all of a project’s stakeholders, sponsors, and project team members.

Project managers have a vast and flexible toolkit of techniques that can resolve complex activities into tasks and subtasks that are documented, controlled, and monitored. So they are found in every kind of organization in the role of employees, contractors, managers, and independent consultants. With good and growing experience their role can be promoted into Program Managers (for multiple related projects), and Portfolio Managers (for selection, prioritization, and alignment of projects and programs with an organization’s strategy).

Top Project Management Skills

Project management is not an easy job. It is even more difficult, that project is delegated to a team of your choosing, given specific goals to achieve over a fixed timeline for a determined budget. And a project manager has to do it all successfully. So a project manager has to use robust project management tools and skills to keep all aspects of their projects organized.

Project managers require a lot of skills to get the job done, which involves management, business, and technical skills along with a number of soft skills. They are not only dealing with processes and systems, but also with people of different kinds. Below mentioned are some basic skills that every project manager should have  project management methodologies.

Project manager technical skills- These are the more tangible and measurable abilities required to be an effective project manager.

  • Forecasting and Planning- At very first a project manager requires skilled forecasting and planning to make educated guesses about the timeline and required resources. They need to use any information they have to make estimates and predictions.

  • Risk Management- As every project has risks, a project manager should be ready to face risks such as a resource will not be available when in need, or delayed approval from a client can affect your timeline. He is not only accountable for navigating around risk but anticipating them so that they can avoid them.

  • Budgeting- Project managers should know that there are financial constraints they need to work with. So they can use their financial management and budgeting skills to deliver successful projects within those limits and timelines.

  • Tracking and Monitoring- For successful completion of a project, project managers should use their monitoring and performance tracking skills to ensure projects are running according to plan and supporting the business goals.

  • Project Management Methodologies- There are several project management methodologies from Agile to Waterfall that are specific principles for overseeing and completing projects. Managers can determine which methodologies are the best fit for their team and project.

Besides that Project management software, subject matter expertise, and meeting facilitation are some other technical skills that a project manager must have for better management.

Project Manager soft skills

  • Leadership- It is an essential and must-have skill for any project manager. Leadership is more than managing tasks; it’s managing people. A project manager applies his proven leadership skills and techniques for seeing the project through to a successful completion via leading a team to achieve the goals. So the leadership comes in different styles, choose and implement the skill which will suit your personality.

  • Communication- This skill involves written and verbal communication skills to ensure that team members and stakeholders are informed about the timeline, budget, plans, and project’s latest happenings.

  • Collaboration- A project manager is responsible for the successful completion of a project so he is tasked with rallying team members around the project vision, coordinating tasks, and making sure that everyone works together effectively. Here it is a must for a project manager to be a skilled collaborator.

  • Time management- It is one of the most required skills for a project manager as they will have numerous demands placed on their time. So, managers must be able to manage their own time and the time of other departments and team members.

Besides the above-mentioned skills, organizational skills, Problem-solving, Adaptability are a few more soft skills that are essentially required to become a successful project manager. So, start gaining these skills to become an effective leader as a project manager.

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