For our US readers
Whether you are training to become a project manager, thinking about it, or are already one, there are certain skills and values that you should have to be the best project manager you can be. Completing a masters in project management from Brandeis University can help you build on some of these skills and ideas, so here are the main ones to think about if you want to be at the top of your project management game.
Communication is Key
When taking on the role of project manager, the ability to get on with your colleagues at every level is vital to doing a good job and keeping good staff morale. You will learn what people prefer. Some team members may prefer to get straight down to business and others may like to make it a bit more personal and talk about family life too. Understanding your team’s needs and providing the right level of communication and detail will ensure you have a great project management team.
Get to Grips with Earned Value Management Systems (EVMS)
Being a project manager means reporting back to your project sponsors with schedule updates and whether you are still within budget. Although you may have a rough idea, this may not be enough for your sponsors. Using and being able to understand an EVMS and explain what the data means to others will ensure you can give exact details, looking more professional and gaining credibility with team members and sponsors alike.
Hold Regular Team Meetings
The best way to know where everyone is at and ensure your project is a success is to hold regular team meetings. This shows your enthusiasm for the project and can boost staff morale. Team meetings can be great for setting deadlines and updating stakeholders and they only need to take a couple of minutes out of your day. The best way to ensure it goes on track is to have an agenda and someone taking minutes. This can show your staff and stakeholders you are interested in them and sometimes it is better to talk about things face to face than behind an email account.
Another big skill you must have as a project manager is being able to manage your time effectively to meet deadlines. This includes being able to delegate effectively so you know the work will be done. Making a to-do list each day might help you identify priorities. Sometimes you may need to be the bad guy and get rid of a team member who is not doing what they should be within time limits. Brandeis University Online can help you manage time effectively whilst studying a masters in project management.
As a project manager, there are many things you need to be aware of and think of to ensure you have a good and happy team behind you and your project meets its deadlines and budget. If you are great with people and have good time management, you are already on your way to becoming a great project manager.