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Category Archives for Effective Project Manager

How Coaching Skills will Make You a Better Project Leader

How Coaching Skills will make you a Better Project Leader

Coaching is more than just a flavor-of-the-month management fad. It’s a helpful approach to getting better performance from colleagues, and supporting their long-term professional development.

Coaching is therefore a valuable skill for project leaders. It will help you with day-to-day project delivery, and with developing team members over your whole project lifecycle.

Of all he skills I acquired, which gave me a boost to my project management practice, I’d rate coaching as the single most valuable. It transformed the way i worked with team members. As a result, it also transformed the culture on my projects. We became more effective and, if I’m honest, what I enjoyed the most was the loyalty it inspired.

If you wan these benefits, and more, then read on. Coaching could well have a huge impact on your project management and leadership too.

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The Four Essentials of Project Team Leadership

The Four Essentials of Project Team Leadership

Team Leadership itself is not hard.  What makes it difficult is fitting it in among a load of other project priorities that are facing you. You’re under pressure to do this and do that. So, you often default to a combination of doing it yourself, telling people what to do, and getting annoyed with a general lack of progress.

And, if this is your first opportunity to lead a project team, you want to do well. So, these pressures can mount up and suck the energy out of you.

In this article, I want to hone down to the four essentials of project team leadership. None of the fancy stuff. Just the four things that make the biggest difference.

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Secret Strategies to Manage Multiple Projects

Secret Strategies to Manage Multiple Projects

As your experience as a Project Manager grows, you will be increasingly called upon to manage multiple projects. And this does not just apply to full time Project managers… Over the years, I have been asked about this by a lot of managers and professionals. They have been tasked with two or more projects to manage, on top of their day-to-day job.

So what are the secret strategies that experienced Project Managers use to manage multiple projects? In this article, I’ll share all of my best advice.Continue reading…

Communication Skills for Project Managers | The Best Books

Communication Skills for Project Managers - The Best Books

A large part of your job as a Project Manager is communication; arguably the largest part. So, only focusing on technical skills will not serve you. It’s essential that you develop excellent communication skills. Luckily, there are many great books to help you.

Increasingly, this is the area my training business is focussed on. My clients are learning the value of giving their project managers – and general managers – great communications skills. And my experience as a project manager taught me two things:

  1. Your success as a Project Manager depends more on your ability to communicate well (with stakeholders, team members, and bosses or clients) than on anything else
  2. There is no better context than Project Management in which to learn, practice and hone your communication skills

So, in this article, I have set out to share some of the brilliant books that have helped me learn along the way. In reviewing them, I have selected the ones that are most likely to help you, today.

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Tips for Developing your Professional Skills in 2018

2018 - Happy New Year

What will you do differently to enhance your Project Management practice in 2018?

In this short New Year article, I’ll tell you what my New Year’s resolutions are, as a project manager. And I’ll also share my tips for developing your professional skills.

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What are the Best Project Management Books?

Yes, we’ve had a huge revolution in how we can learn and teach ourselves. And you may be ready for a project management course. But, for a new project manager, project management books are still a great way to learn. And for those of us with experience under our belts, the right project management books can offer new insights and ideas.

So, what project management books would I recommend to a new project manager?

That’s the question I have set out to answer in this article. Any selection of the best project management books must be subjective and this is no different. But in this revised version of an old article, I have tried to make it as useful as possible, by dividing it into four sections:

  1. Easy to read introductory project management books
  2. Next step project management books for PMs with a little experience under your belt
  3. Next step books on specific project management disciplines
  4. More demanding reads, with a higher technical content

So with this explanation, but with no apology for the subjective selections, here are my recommendations. Please add your own to the comments section below. Continue reading…

Alpha Project Managers: What you’ll Learn and Whether to Buy it

Alpha Project Managers

‘Alpha Project Managers: What the Top 2% Know that Everyone Else Does Not’ is a far better book than I had expected.

So in this article, I’m going to share some of the most important things I learned from it. And I’ll tell you whether you should buy it, depending on where you are in your Project Management career.

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Podcast: The Value of Lifelong Learning for Project Professionals

The Value of Lifelong Learning for Project Professionals with Elise Stevens

All the professional bodies like PMI, APM and IAPM require CPD (Continuing Professional Development). But even if they did not, all project professionals should embrace lifelong learning.

I’ve lost count of the number of major changes and subtle shifts since I started my project management career in the mid 1990s. If you want to stay current, stay relevant, and, indeed, stay employable. You’ll want to engage in lifelong learning.

In this podcast, Elise Stevens of EliseStevens.co (formerly at: Fix My Project Chaos) and I discuss The Value of Lifelong Professional Learning.

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Performance Feedback for Project Team Members: In a Nutshell

Performance Feedback for Project Team Members

As a project manager, you are not just responsible for your project. You are also responsible for the people on your project. And there is nothing that develops people more reliably than good quality performance feedback.

Often, we get our own performance feedback by simply observing what we do and the results it has. But it’s too easy to miss the details. That’s why we need others to give us their feedback. So, you need to develop the skills for giving good performance feedback to your project team members.

In this article, we’ll summarize the skills, techniques, and tips you’ll need.

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Do You Know What your Project Sponsor Wants?

Do You Know What Your Project Sponsor Wants?

Call them your sponsor, your boss, or your client if you like. But one thing we all know as a Project Manager is this. Our job is to do what our Project Sponsor wants.

But here’s the question… Do you know what your Project Sponsor wants? If you don’t, you’d better find out quickly.

And that’s what this article is all about.

By the way, is your job to do what your Project Sponsor wants?

Some will argue that it isn’t. It is to do what your employer needs, to serve your stakeholders, or to meet the expectations of the organization that’s paying the bills. These are all true.

But this article is going to make one giant assumption: that your sponsor’s job is to represent these faithfully. In another article, we’ll examine the vexed question of what to do if your sponsor goes rogue. For now, we’ll assume that serving our sponsor, and delivering what they want, is at the heart of your role.

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