8 Major Interpersonal Skills for Project Managers
Interpersonal skills are abilities that an individual should possess to work harmoniously and efficiently with others. Being in the project management profession, it is important that you develop in a balance of conceptual, technical and interpersonal skills that will enable you to analyze situations and deal with them appropriately. Some of the important interpersonal skills for project managers that they need to manage projects are:
A good Project manager must be a leader. If possible he must be a servant leader. He must be able to crystallize the vision and assist his team members in understanding what the project intends to achieve. He has to know what the project plans to achieve and work towards achieving those goals.
#2 Team Building
Another interpersonal skill for any Project Manager is team-building skills. When a Project Manager wants to start a new project, he has to gather requirements and bring in team members who can assist him in achieving project objectives. Each of the team members has varied backgrounds. He must be able to bring them together and make them work together as a team.
A good Project Manager also needs to learn how to motivate his team. He has to take time to understudy what is motivating his team. He must know their individual goals as far as the project and the team is concerned. He needs to ensure that their needs are accommodated without jeopardizing the corporate goals of the project.
It is also a known fact that a Project Manager uses about ninety percent of his time communicating. A Project Manager has to make sure that he is communicating with his target audience. He has to make sure that the right message is being communicated to the right audience in order to get the right result. When appropriate messages are passed across to the right people, the Project Manager will have all the necessary support that he needs to run a successful project.
The ability to influence stakeholders is one of the interpersonal skills that a good project manager needs in order to succeed. At times, stakeholders might find it to agree on a decision and this might bring a project to a standstill. The Project Manager can use influencing skills to bring stakeholders back to the table again and convince them to do the needful so that the project can proceed as planned.
#6 Decision making
Also, as a Project Manager, you should be able to make decisions on the go. Project Managers are expected to know what could go wrong with their projects and prepare for any eventuality. Most times, stakeholders and team members would turn to them for opinions and decisions. They are not expected to be shallow as far as what needs to be done is concerned for the success of the project.
#7 Political and cultural awareness
As a Project Manager, you are also a Politician and a Change Agent. You need to know the behavior of people in the organization as well as what motivates their reactions at times. You also have to understand the organization’s culture as well as how you can use that to your own advantage. Being a politician as a project manager means you know the right button to press at every point in time. This also means that you will get buy-in from critical stakeholders when it is needed most.
A good Project Manager is expected to be a good negotiator. He must be able to negotiate for resources that are critical for the success of his project. He also needs to negotiate with contractors in order to ensure that he gets a good bargain for whatever the organization is paying for.
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Adeniyi Salau Scrum Master Certified , CCNA R&S , BeingCert and Scrum Certified Digital Marketing Professional, CEP, MOS, MCP, CSCU (Project 2016), Microsoft Certified Security and Networking Associate is a Google and Beingcert Certified Digital Marketer, Project Manager and SEO Expert of repute with about a decade of Blogging and online marketing experience. He is always ready to share his experience with others.