“Project Manager” oftentimes carries a negative connotation, one associated with unnecessary overhead, endless meetings and mundane status reports. Project managers should be viewed as key players in planning, leading and executing projects. Project management tools and techniques can be learned by reading the PMBoK and obtaining a PMP certification, but project leadership is typically learned in real-time on the job. An effective project leader becomes one by evolving through challenging engagements that result in a track record of success. A PMP certification equips managers with a tool belt of terms, processes and perfect scenarios to strive for, but an acronym after a name is of little value unless it’s used as a foundation to better serve clients and project teams.
Successfully leading and executing projects requires dedicated focus to the four main lenses of an engagement – strategy, people, process and technology. How does the company’s strategy govern the technologies that may be implemented as part of the project? Does the project team have all of the necessary skill-sets to implement this technology? Does the client have the required resources to operationally support this technology? Understanding interdependencies and impacts each lens has on one another enables a project leader to anticipate and avoid risks that would otherwise equate to unplanned cost and an ill perception of the project. A great leader effectively communicates with stakeholders to motivate them and exploit their strengths, and foster relationships to move the project toward its goal.
At West Monroe Partners, our creative, talented project leaders will help you define a clear course of action that confidently takes you from defining project goals through realizing project success. For more information on West Monroe Partners, visit our firm’s website. For more information on our Energy & Utilities practice, visit our practice’s website.