Project Management

Are You Cut Out to Be a PM? Training Holds the Answer

Following 20 years at a large Canadian telecommunications firm, Bruce established the project management consulting firm Solutions Management Inc (SMI). Since 1999, he has provided contract project/program management services, been a source for project management support personnel and created/delivered courses to over 7,000 participants in Canada, the United States and England.

Ask yourself this: Thinking of the best project manager you have worked with during your career, what were their professional attributes that led to them being successful?

Today’s project manager requires a unique combination of skills. They are able to connect at an individual level to secure commitments to define and plan work. They then direct the work to completion. All of this, in most cases, with limited authority.

When I managed a large team of project managers, one of my key roles was recruiting the next generation. I looked for the type of intrinsic personality I knew would be successful. I then placed the individual on a career development program that would likely lead to them achieving professional success—and be successful within my project management center of excellence.

Recently, I found myself reflecting on my hiring perspective while delivering a project management fundamentals course. In today’s highly remote-driven training environment, in-person training is rapidly shrinking. As a facilitator, I have come to accept the opportunity to observe individual classroom behavior has changed.

In the past, I prided myself on carefully watching for signs of understanding when lecturing. Based on body language, the nature of questions and simply the look on participants’ faces, I could determine if they “got it.” The real…

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