Project managers acquire their livelihoods by taming mayhem. They put design to workflow, logic to project expenses, and priority to timelines. They appease office politics when necessary, delegate project tasks to matching talent, restrain efforts when it exceeds the scope, and assures quality by aligning the project with the anticipation of the clientele. And they are only the tip of the iceberg of a Project Manager roles and responsibilities of managing project.
It's a well-paying profession and there is a high demand for project managers by organizations needing help to deliver goods on time and within the set a budget. Without project managers, business entities are bound to lose millions of dollars while the accomplishment of intricate projects would take ages.
Today, smart organizations heavily depend on very proficient project managers to outline, coordinate, and finalize their chain of projects. Let us now explore the fundamental duties played by project managers that you should be know of in 2020.
Advantages of becoming a Project Manager
If your intentions include achieving excellence in project management, the advantages are very compelling:
- Project managers are listed as one of the most satisfied and well-paid professionals ($70,000 for newbies and $142,000 for the experienced lot).
- The Bureau of Labor Statistics, suggests that the profession has a faster job outlook with an industrial variation of 11%-12%. Today, enterprises are largely project-driven hence, the increasing urgency for competent professionals.
- Constant self-initiative and advancement will be your auto-mode.
- Core skills are transferable to other careers and professions.
- You can easily use your professional experience to progress your ambitions to directorial leadership, such as the position of Chief Operating Officer (COO).
You can bet that these advantages will not come without a sense of duty. Therefore, you will be obligated to a long list of responsibilities and expected to carry out some hard tasks. These shows that project management is designed for the few highly adaptable individuals.
So what are the Project Manager Roles and Responsibilities?
Project managers are largely answerable for the whole project and will entirely be liable if it succeeds or fails. Being entitled to lead a project through its different phases from start to finish, here are key tasks any project manager should perform:
1. Start the project
Project managers have to do an initial assessment of the suggested project while considering the formal requirements of the business or engagements with clients, management, and stakeholders via business case which will cover the following:
- Evaluate the requirements of the project/business
- Identify needed resources and assets
- Figure out any dependencies
- Compute costs
- Develop a schedule
- Assess risks
2. Develop a detailed work plan
A project plan generally is known as a work plan is a record that elaborates everything about the project. It strategically sets the bar and uses criteria that consider things like expenses, time, quality and so forth for evaluating the success of the project.
- Adopt measures for mitigating risks
- Develop appropriate processes and policies
- Elaborate workflow/activity in the plan
- Use an effective framework for the project
- Delegate roles and tasks
- Define milestones and schedules
- Determine a working budget
- Explain project scope, specifications, objectives, and other parameters
3. Communicate project elements and progress
Communication of the final scope and other project parameters comes right after the formulation of the project management plan. This clearly and uniformly sets the expectations for all stakeholders.
- Set expectations for all involved parties
- Implement all-inclusive project documentation
4. Stabilize the project ecosystem or work environment
Projects can be managed either directly from the site or remotely from anywhere in the world. For effective management, one will need to use the right tools, communication channels, and platforms.
- Make or acquire needed systems, tools, and resources
- Enhance accessibility and availability of necessary resources and tools
5. Project team building
Project success is heavily dependent on how you treat the people working on it.
- Clearly define tasks and roles
- Confirm protocols and communication channels
- Foster positive relationship-building/collaboration
6. Project plan execution
With all systems good to go, project managers now have to execute the work plan from inception to finish.
- Maintain project within budget
- Observe timeliness
- Cost-efficiently allocate resources
- Observe quality standards
- Maintain team motivation
- Handle change
7. Project monitoring
Utilizing tools like Jira, GanttPRO, TeamGantt, Microsoft Project, Monday.com enables project managers to have a detailed and focused view of every element in the project. Their sole purpose is to alleviate risks, enhance gains, and maintain individual focus in their respective tasks.
- Resolve identified conflicts
- Handle red flags and roadblocks
- Reward brilliance
- Initiate curative/corrective actions when needed
- Bring stakeholders up to speed with correct progress reports
8. Finalize the project
While bringing a project to a close may seem simple to project managers, this calls for a sharp mind and no time to cocoon in a comfort zone. Each project presents a learning opportunity that helps to improve one’s performance in the future.
- Celebrate your team for the good job done
- Audit the project exhaustively
- Proactively note and share actionable recommendations for future projects
Qualities of good Project Managers
Project Managers need to possess an array of skills like business, technical, and leadership to enhance their performance. However, there are common qualities among all successful professionals in project management. Aspiring individuals should start by studying them. These core traits include accountable, discipline, purpose-driven, timeliness, good communication skills, collaboration, motivation, and budget management.
Playing blame games stalls progress while practicing ownership and accountability ensures project success. Successful project management practitioners understand and practice this regularly in their work to improve performance.
Bringing structure into distinct project teams is not simple. This might prompt a project manager to occasionally crack the whip to maintain order. However, to instill discipline, smart project managers use their behavior and habits as examples for the teams to emulate.
Project managers are generally objective and constantly desire to deliver. Experienced project managers are purpose-driven, result-oriented and have a focused mindset.
Projects usually have a timeline and therefore demand for project managers with strong project management skills. Experienced project management practitioners formulate reasonable project plans with feasible schedules and timelines to facilitate timely delivery.
Project managers need to be able to clearly impart, describe, and articulate all project parameters such as objectives, tasks, and activities for every team member to help the whole process run smoothly.
Working with distinct teams and individuals can be hard to manage but instilling a sense of close collaboration and cooperation, helps build the right relationships. This oneness helps project managers to identify and resolve issues as they arise.
Motivation comes in many faces. This attribute fuels the drive inside project managers to keep on going even when faced with insurmountable challenges. Project managers who lack this kind of enthusiasm tend to be less confident and therefore give up when the going gets tough.
8. Budget management
Project management came about as a solution to wastage of costs through unjustified expenses that stalled progress. Therefore, there is increased demand for cost-efficient project managers who can accomplish projects that are within the set budget.
Take-away for excelling in the project management career
As a profession, project management is quite satisfying but requires one to have a matrix of proficiency in business, technical, and people skills.
While it may have numerous advantages, this career path also comes with challenges that do not make it suitable for everyone. To succeed the Project Manager Roles and Responsibilities is one that needs to be sturdy in their stewardship with attributes such as leadership, discipline, and teamwork, are key in delivering projects timely and on budget.