Are You A Leader Or a Follower?

Most people assume that project management skills are only necessary when working for a large organization, but this is not necessarily the case. In fact, the skills of a project manager can be applied in almost every single industry. And what’s more, the skills learned as a project manager can be used across the entire world, opening up a plethora of opportunities. 

As just one example, U.S. company Hill has just secured a project management role in Saudi Arabia. The firm will be in charge of Saudi Telecom Company’s King Abdulaziz Telecommunication Complex project, taking care of everything from management to design and supervision to construction. 

Indeed, if you can speak another language and have project manager skills, the world is your oyster in terms of opportunities. Furthermore, being able to gain chartered status as a project manager, it is easy to see why more people are choosing to study within this field. 

What Attributes Does a Project Manager Need?

While project management is an industry where there are many opportunities, it has to be said that it is not for everyone. Some people are born leaders and will relish the opportunity to take charge of large and complex projects, especially those that have the organizational and leadership skills to do it. On the flipside, there are those individuals who are simply not comfortable taking the helm and find it difficult to delegate tasks. 

Before considering a career in project management, it might be a good idea to find out what attributes a project manager needs and see if they match yours: 

  • Excellent Communication Skills – A project manager needs to be able to communicate effectively with a range of people, including team members, contractors, senior management and, sometimes, stakeholders. The ability to explain clearly and concisely is a vital skill for a competent project manager. 
  • Decisiveness – To be a good project manager, you will need to be decisive. Projects quickly become derailed when those in charge are unable to make quick decisions. 
  • Strong Leadership Skills – As a project manager, you will no doubt be in charge of a team of people. It will be your job to motivate them and ensure they are all working to their potential. Your team will need to know that you are behind them and that they can count on your support to get the job done. 
  • Technical Knowledge – Most companies use project management software to help with the smooth running of their projects. As the manager of such a project, you will need to be able to use these software programs effectively. Fortunately, there are software developers such as LiquidPlanner that provide easy-to-use software programs that can help you develop and improve the project manager skills you already have. 
  • Cool Headedness – Project management is a stressful job at the best of times, and there will be times when things just don’t go to plan. Keeping a cool head when under pressure is an essential trait of a good project manager. 

Who Should Not be a Project Manager?

As we already mentioned, project management is not for everyone. If you find it difficult to talk to others either face to face or on the phone, you might want to consider a different career. And if you are the type of person who prefers to do a job him/herself rather than ask someone else to do it, you might as well forget project management right now. 

Being in charge is not something that everyone is comfortable with. This does not mean that you would not excel as part of a project management team. Project managers need strong people behind them who are prepared to work hard.

You just need to decide – are you a leader or a follower?