The five qualities of a good project manager

P is for Project

There are certain skills inherent to project management excellence. Of course, real-world experience and outcomes are one measure of a successful project manager. More often than not, small businesses and start-ups “anoint” a PM to manage their projects. If this sounds familiar, I would like to offer up the following five traits to look for when assigning a project manager. It might seem straightforward to reach out to the person closest to the operational side of your project. On the other hand, it might make even more sense to look more subjectively at the people within your team and seek out a PM with many, if not all of, the following qualities:

  • Prepared: Who shows up with their research done, ready to ask questions, prepared to contribute?
  • Precise: Which member of your team shows the most attention to detail?
  • Proactive: Who is the most assertive member of your team? Who communicates well?
  • Persevere : PMs clearly need to be persistent and demonstrate follow-through, with an innate ability to seek alternate solutions to complex problems.
  • Perpetual Learner: One of the most overlooked qualities, an avid learner will actively strive to grow and develop their knowledge, skills and abilities.

Without overlooking experience and a proven track record of success, it is always wise to consider less tangible, more personality driven factors when assigning a member of your team to the role of PM. By that same token, it is naïve to assume that the person who is closest to the project – or the team member who seems most willing – should be handed this strategic position. Over the next five blog posts, I will examine each distinct quality, discuss why each one is important, and explore why the obvious choice for PM is often not the best choice. P is not only for Project, P is for Person! My next blog post will discuss the unique planning and preparation skills required to set the framework for project success.

Posted on January 15, 2015 and filed under 5 Qualities of a Good PM.