Although the word “leadership” is not officially used in the title of a Project Manager, it is an essential trait of people who succeed as a project manager.
Here are a few leadership virtues that are commonly found in an effective project manager. It’s not necessary that every project manager will have all of these, but the more the better.
- Focused: He focuses first on her core-competence which is project management. He doesn’t try to be “An inch deep and a mile wide” in other tasks. Even if he’s coming from a technical background like most project managers would be especially in the IT, he would master the art of managing project expectations and delivery and then participate in any other tasks.
- Well-thought decision maker: He takes enough time in decision making but once a decision is made, he doesn’t do any second-guesses. When he executes, he executes, does not think about the execution metadata.
- Listener and receptive: He encourages the team to openly share their ideas and rewards and recognize the ones that serve the project. He hires more brilliant people in his team than himself.
- Observer: He is well aware of his own as well as his team’s strengths and weaknesses. Not only that, he leverages each team member’s strengths for the project’s success.
- Visualizer: He sees things clearly. That’s the reason he can begin with the end in the mind. He can see the majority of the forces that shape the outcome of the project events, not just the things happening near to him.
- Responsible: When things go wrong, even though he is not directly responsible for the wrongdoing, he assumes the responsibility and does the next right thing.
- Shares the credit: He gives credit to his team first for the jobs well done.
- He leads by example. He exhibits a strong character with remarkable competence. His principles and values are visible to the team and his work ethic is appreciated by the clients. He is not merely a talker but an executor when the need arises.
- Professional: He is a passionate individual, an encouraging manager and an upbeat professional who is a role model for his colleagues.
- Self-motivated: He is self-motivated. He gets trained, gets better at discipline and builds a personal image of a motivated professional with a good personal image as a dependable project manager.
- Curious: He is curious about what’s happening in the global context and how it relates to his project.
- Learner: He has the modesty to learn from mistakes and failures. He continuously learns, unlearns and relearns.
- Proactive: Regardless of the personal risks involved, he keeps his motivation high and deals proactively with the situations. He has the charisma needed to motivate others for the project accomplishment no matter how challenging the project situation gets.
- Principle Centric: He has rock solid work-ethics. He practices principle centric leadership. Integrity at work has become his second nature.
- Confident: He is a self-confident person who has the courage to overcome uncertainties and fears.
Leadership is an important virtue that every project manager can get benefit from.