If you are a project manager or you employ project managers, you might wonder what skills are most important to excel in this role. After all, project management is not an easy job. In fact, it is a mix of not-easy jobs that include concept, planning, execution, managing and successful implementation of a project.
While technical skills are definitely important for project managers to succeed, Thrive Skills – an essential set of cognitive, social and behavioral skills – are equally, if not more important. Project management roles and responsibilities are varied and include a number of diverse competencies and tasks. This makes it essential for project managers to communicate well, lead with confidence, solve problems, have a collaborative outlook and demonstrate great cognitive strengths. Let’s break each of these down and look at the Thrive Skills that each quality requires.
Project managers liaise with multiple stakeholders, both external and internal, and communicating relevant information is crucial to a project’s success. Their way of communication needs to be credible and persuasive. Project managers also need to be good listeners and understand different perspectives and ideas.
Essential Thrive Skills: On-Point Messaging, Personal Credibility, Active Listening
Lead with confidence
Project managers need to have excellent leadership qualities to achieve their desired goals and manage their teams effectively. They need to be able to give proper feedback, have the courage to make difficult decisions, be open to taking risks and own their projects.
Essential Thrive Skills: Prudent Risk-Taking, Giving Actionable Feedback, Commercial Acumen, Taking Ownership
Like most other job functions, project management comes with its own set of challenges that need practical solutions. Project managers often need to get creative to find solutions for the problems they face. They need to understand nuances, learn how to prioritize work and when faced with doubts about their ideas and methods, they should be able to reason with logic.
Essential Thrive Skills: Structure Problem-Solving, Creative Solutioning, Efficient Prioritization, Logical Reasoning, Practical Cleverness
Project managers cannot work in silos. With the number of stakeholders involved at any given time for any project, it is essential for project managers to ensure they are open to feedback, their teams trust them, they’re able to navigate conflict and work as a team. An important skill that helps during times of conflict and stress is the ability to regulate emotions, something that project managers must develop.
Essential Thrive Skills: Collaborative Orientation, Embracing Feedback, Fostering Trust, Navigating Conflict, Skillful Teamwork, Emotional Self-Regulation
Project managers need to constantly think on their feet and stay prepared for future contingencies. When faced with challenges, they need to stay firm and look at the bright side of things. They need to stay curious and think critically. Working with all kinds of people, they also need to overcome biases. (https://www.creditcadabra.com/)
Essential Thrive Skills: Big-Picture Thinking, Cultivating Foresight, Informed Decision-Making, Overcoming Bias, Optimistic Outlook, Ethical Clarity
Do you think you will make a great project manager or are you looking to upskill project managers at your organization? Speak to our expert.