Developing the Skills that Spell Success for Your Project

Spell success

If you’re a project manager, project success is probably the one thing you think about day in day out. More specifically you probably worry about how you can make sure your project(s) gets completed on time, on budget and to a high quality. The common assumption is that project success comes down to executing PM skills and techniques effectively, such as writing achievable plans and minimising risks to the plans being delivered. But while these are absolutely essential elements to get right, they are not the whole answer, and they won’t necessarily lead to triumph without a number of peripheral skills being effectively employed.

Anecdotal evidence, as well as formal research continues to suggest that some of the most important areas Project Managers need to develop revolve around people management, and other behavioural skills. When it comes to project failures, technical know-how is rarely the reason behind a project not being completed in line with expectations. Issues that have been highlighted include poor people management and a lack of clear leadership, insufficient understanding of the requirements and strategic vision, ineffective communication, poor stakeholder management and issues around negotiation and supplier management.

With project failures costing companies millions, sometimes billions, in unnecessary expenditure, finding ways to improve the outcomes of projects has never been more important, and equipping project managers with the skills to excel is the first step to achieving this success. In our upcoming blog series we look specifically at some of the other skills that project managers need to develop, aside from expertise in PM techniques. In particular we explore some of the essential behavioural skills needed, and we discuss how these combined will help spell SUCCESS for your project.

Spelling Success in PM

S – Stakeholder management

U – Understanding relationships

C – Communicating effectively

C – Conflict management

E – Engaging and Motivating teams

S – Successful negotiations

S – Solving complex problems

In each blog, we’ll delve into one of the above competencies and explore how it relates to project management success, and some of the tips and tricks to help you develop the skill.