We have seen what project management exactly is and also the steps involved in achieving successful implementation of project management techniques. Like we saw, the four major steps were planning, initiation, execution and finally closure. But what or rather who, drives all of this and makes it possible? This is where the extremely important role of the project manager comes into play.
So who is a project manager? A project manager, most importantly, needs to be driven, goal oriented individual who understands the need to organize and is passionate towards what he does. He should be able to set and follow certain standards which would make an organization reach its pinnacle of success. Project managers should also be able to identify what project have in common and how they play a strategic role in building up an organization’s reputation.
A project manager’s duties start right from the first step of initiation and continues till the closure phase. These duties include planning, execution, managing of the people, resources and clearly defining the scope of the project at hand. These people are the point of contact in case of any discrepancies or ambiguities that are related to the given project and are the ones that are considered responsible and held accountable for any shortcomings. The full responsibility and authority to complete a particular project rests on the project manager’s discretion.
They can also be known as change agents, as they have the capability to turn the project goals into their own personal goals and use their acquired skills, knowledge and expertise to inspire and motivate the project team members and present them with a sense of shared responsibility. Their duties may end with the end of the project wherein it meets the predefined goals or the position may be a semi permanent one for a limited time or until a predetermined point in the project’s schedule or stage of completion.
People skills are extremely important when working in a group, with different people that have varying mindsets and the project managers have the responsibility of cultivating such skills among all the stakeholders to promote a sense of trust and encourage constant constructive and effective communication.
A project manager is the person responsible for accomplishing the project objectives. Key project management responsibilities include
- defining and communicating project objectives that are clear, useful and attainable
- procuring the project requirements like workforce, required information, various agreements and material or technology needed to accomplish project objectives
- managing the constraints of the project management triangle, which are cost, time, scope and quality
In a sense, to sum up the responsibilities of project manager, it can be said that project management is the responsibility of a project manager.
There are several different kinds of project managers, exclusive to the industry they work in such as Construction Project Manager, Architectural Project Manager, Insurance Claim Project Manager, Engineering Project Manager, Software/IT Project Manager. However, all of these leaders have a few common duties such as:
- Developing the project plans
- Managing the project stakeholders
- Managing communication
- Managing the project team
- Managing the project risks
- Managing the project schedule
- Managing the project budget
- Managing the project conflicts
- Managing the project delivery
A successful project manager, therefore, has to be constantly available and should be responsible and committed enough to be able to be held accountable for any ups or downs the project may face.
Increasingly, their seemingly difficult jobs are being made much easier by software tools like VComply. VComply allows you to constantly keep a track of what goes on in your organization. Therefore, you know who is completing deadlines and who is lagging behind and can therefore maximize the outputs for the project in hand in the best possible way.
Clearly, project managers play an integral and indispensable role in the proper functioning of an organization.
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