Project Management

4 Core Competencies New PMs Need Training On

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.

My colleague and friend Andy Jordan recently penned an article titled “Is There Still a Place For New ‘Traditional’ Project Managers?” Andy and I don’t always agree, but we are very close to being on the same page on this issue.

Let’s define project management. Wikipedia tells us it’s “the process of leading the work of a team to achieve all project goals within the given constraints.” My style is less formal. To me, a definition of basic project management is to identify what needs to be done to achieve a desired goal, and then provide the structure to get it done.

I can’t even estimate how many people attending my project management courses say “I’ve been running projects for years and I’m so happy to finally get a chance to learn best practices so I can be more effective.”

Andy’s article spoke to a possible emerging trend where companies don’t want to invest in waterfall training since agile is the direction they want to go. I’ll argue the corporate-wide agile approach another time. I wonder, however, how a new project manager could leap directly into the project management profession without understanding the basics.

I’ve heard it argued that auto mechanics are 50% computer technicians. Given the amount of tech that powers vehicles today, there is no doubt…

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"My sole inspiration is a telephone call from a producer."

- Cole Porter