Section E Personal Skills

“Non omnia possumus omnes.” – We are not all capable of everything.

Eclogues VIII, Virgil, 70 – 19 B.C.

So, make the most of what you have, and improve what you can.

Garth Ward, 2014.

The focus of this section is on interactions with others, since this is the only mechanism the project manager has to get things done.

The most important skill in project management is to communicate. When a team can do that properly it has the possibility of being a great success. Communication is a two way thing. There is the giving it out bit, but there is also the getting it in bit, that is, the listening. One only really learns how to communicate, when one has learnt how to listen and, particularly, how to hear what is not being said.14

Relationships are the most important factor in communications. Without good relationships, people will be reluctant to talk to you. A conversation is all the project manager has in their tool bag. Consequently, the quality of the conversation has a direct impact on the result.

I have never forgotten visiting a project manager who was just finishing a conversation with a member of his project team. The closing remark was: “Discuss it with Fred.” To which the person replied, “Who's Fred?” The PM responded, “He's the person who sits next to you!”

Eliminate the office door as a barrier between you and the team. Maintain an ‘open‐door policy’.

See Section A for Communication Mechanisms and Section C Managing and Conducting Meetings. ...

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