Why Project Managers Fail to Manage

May 28, 2015

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A successful Project Manager is one that can be on top of his/her projects. To achieve this requires effective management skills – the ability to manage people and processes. Not all methods work all of the time; this depends on the situation, the type of project, etc.


Select those below that best apply for your situation


Option 1: Be Direct:

The team will always look up to and respect a leader that is assertive and direct. This makes so much more sense, particularly when people are busy. Refrain from checking up on them by asking, “Did you finish …?”, rather ask, “What happened with..?” Deal with people on an Adult to Adult basis and they will respond as an Adult.

Option 2: Facilitating:

Facilitating means sitting back and allowing the team to do what they are paid and expected to do. If they make an error, view it as a learning curve, provided you are there to assist them to bring it back on track. This option works well provided that the team is experienced and/or the final deliverable has been produced numerous times before.

Option 3: Overall Control:

This option is to be used in conjunction with the other options. The Project Manager uses the Project Plan as a guideline by communicating with the team through adhoc meetings or any form of direct communication (face-to-face, emails, telephonic, etc.). Most of the managing is done from the office with the Project Plan close at hand. This works well if the project is relatively small. This option is not to be used as a stand-alone.

Option 4: Directing:

This option requires you, the manager to be involved at every stage giving direction as the project progresses. It helps you to monitor the project very effectively and micro-manage. It is ideal for a new or very inexperienced team or when the final deliverable is produced for the first time – whereby it is a learning curve for everyone. This, however, does not allow for the team to be empowered, so this option is to be used with caution.

Option 5: Collaborating:

This option requires that the Project Manager is hands-on with the team as well as the process. Regular meetings are required, giving and receiving updates is essential to keep the process on track. This works well in large projects where there are many people to monitor and where time-lines are critical. Collaborating allows you to keep up to date with the status of the project.

Each of these options has a place. You need to decide which option or combination of options to adopt for the success of the overall project.


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