Categories: Best Practices, Career Help, Change Management, Education and Training, Human Aspects of PM, Human Resources, Leadership, Leadership, Mentoring, Program Management, Roundtable, Talent Management
By Peter Tarhanidis, MBA, Ph.D.
In project management, your presence as a leader is vital to your success. But how do you begin to refine this skill set? Start by considering what kind of presence you convey, and how that presence impacts your influence with teams.
Underlying a leader’s presence are sets of behaviors and actions directed toward team members in various situations. A leader must distinguish between the two prevailing behavioral approaches. In the task approach, leaders accomplish their goals by setting structures, organizing work, and defining roles and responsibilities. The relationship approach, on the other hand, employs behaviors to help teams feel at ease within a variety of situations.
In other words: Is the leader driven to treat team members as valued individuals and attend to their needs, or do they see team members as a means to achieving a goal? This approach will affect a leader and their team’s performance.
Project managers are constantly combining these two approaches to influence teams and attain a goal. Clearly, there are certain behaviors that emerge in one’s presence which increase one’s influence over teams. Examples include humility, honesty, confidence, composure and emotional intelligence. But the truth is, influencing teams takes a great deal of time and energy. There is only a certain amount of time and energy one dedicates in every moment. For many project managers this creates a challenge: What can a leader do to be present in every moment?
The opportunity does exist for leaders to train themselves to be present. By applying a certain regimen of actions, a leader can apply a thoughtful approach to increasing their presence. Dedicating yourself to increasing your energy and presence will result in positively influencing teams. Below is a list of four actions to help unleash one’s performance through increased energy, focus and presence:
- Define your purpose to engage your passion and goals. Write down an easy and memorable statement that you can use as your personal branding message.
- Identify the key relationships that require your energy and balance their needs.
- Stay physically and emotionally healthy, which will increase your energy levels.
- Take time daily to meditate to recognize your feelings and the consequences of the decisions you need to make to attain your goals.
Let me know how you unleash your performance. Please share your top behavior picks, why they define your presence, and how you successfully increased your influence with teams!