Are You A Self-Determined PM?

David Deacon

At the heart of the job of managing projects and people is the imperative — and opportunity — to create the environment within which the team does their work. The best project managers know that the informal rules around how people should work make a substantial difference to what people do and what they pay attention to, and they seek to shape that in a way that maximizes success.

Here are eight things the best project managers know and consistently do:

1. Great project managers understand that shaping the environment is their job. Great project managers are clear about the impact they have on the team environment. They recognize this is not accidental, that team culture is not random. They understand that it’s their job to create the environment for the team, and they can choose the type of environment they create.

2. They understand the power of amplification—it’s in the structure of the job. By virtue of being a project manager, your words and actions are amplified. Every pronouncement you make may be repeated, every action emulated, and every expectation reflected in the work of your team.

3. They deliberately choose the environment they hope to create. This process is active and deliberate. Different managers choose different themes for the environment they create. My checklist for the best kind of environment to create is as follows:

Positive. Help the …

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"A narcissist is someone better looking than you are. "

- Gore Vidal