My sail as a Project Manager


Captain of the Ship is what a Project Manager is referred to
and yes I have been captaining various ships now from last one year. The ships
have sailed through silent waters and thunder storms. As a captain I owned the
full responsibility of making sure that ship reaches from one shore to another
(scope), safely (in defined schedule, cost and quality). By definition each
Project is different and unique and so are the Project Managers, each Project
Manager has a different style of execution and reaction to situation, what
works for me might not work for you. Nevertheless I was inspired to jot down
what are the things I had done in my journey to make sure that ship reach the
shore safely.

 

The first and foremost is to “BE PROACTIVE”, as a captain
one needs to be proactive in anticipating the needs of his stakeholders and
that can only be done by cultivating a healthy relationship and which is
possible through more and more interactions. Being a Project Manager one should
not be constrained to the audience he/she needs to report to or work with on
management aspects of the project, but should try to interact with all the
members which also includes the all the Customers Team who has direct or
indirect influence or interest in the project success or failure. This is only
possible if a Project Manager take on or share some responsibilities of the
work which allows to have interaction with the team. There are always areas and
opportunities present in the project which one needs to grab and help, which
helps in becoming part of the team rather than sitting on the top and dictating
others – as its rightly quoted “The way to get started is to quit talking
and begin doing.

 

The second is to be with the team, even though they might
not need you. It is very important for the team to see you around which helps
in building their confidence. They know you are there for them and you can be
approached easily. This acts a double edge sword, you get to know the minute
details which will empower you to take right decisions at right time. One
should not be constrained by money but should try to be innovative in
motivating the team members. Team is what makes the Project Manager
complete
. You are like a disabled person if your team is not with you.
Apart from time at office the Project Manager should treat his team as his
family and should try to create informal environment to interact with the team
and get to know each other. This could be Dutch movie or dinner party,
celebrating special occasions like birthdays, awards, or small treats at
Barista or even over snacks. This provides a chance to understand the needs of
all team members and their way of working. This way you can prioritize the work
accordingly and take their help in achieving the impossible.

 

The third one that comes to my mind is being “TRANSPARENT”,
be open with your stakeholders, read A as A and don’t try to hide anything
under the hood. All the stakeholders are interested in making the Project
successful and the ones who are not you should try to use them for critical
reviews. Being transparent both in giving the bad news as well as good news.
This is not an easy thing to do  always but this will help to build your
credibility as a person on whom the stakeholders can reply upon. As
consultants, Project Managers should also become Trusted Advisor to the
customer, and all internal and external stakeholders. This way you get to be
looked upon as a person who is interested in making project success and are not
just constrained by the numbers, data and processes. All that are Project
Managers weapons, which one has mastered well but should not be the focus for
the Manager. Those should be part of your daily routine where as your aim
should be the success of your stakeholders

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