A Project manager is someone who applies his knowledge, skills, tools, and techniques in leading a team of experts to finish a project. Project management is specially useful when woking with a team of freelancers and remote workers so that one person can lead these remote freelancers to work in a team and reach one certain goal. Hire a freelance project manager can help you a lot in leading a team of freelancers. An effective project manager has certain skills. Here in this article we are going to introduce the most important skills/qualities of an effective project manager in 2020.
1. Be goal-oriented
As a project manager you need to be goal-oriented. It means that you have to define clear goals and objectives when you are managing a project. You should have the end results and what you are going to achieve in mind when thinking of the procedures. To be goal-oriented, you should create a roadmap of the steps you are going to take and have a plan for hows and when’s of taking them.
2. Have decision-making skills
Decision making is a mental skill that everyone has to a more or less degree. But as a project manager, you need to be a decisive person, able to make an optimal decision quickly; or else, you might miss some good opportunities. That’s why acquiring/improving decision-making skills is important for project managers.
There are certain methods that by learning them, a person becomes more proficient at decision making. Methods such as cost-benefit analysis(weighing the pros and cons of every option). Narrowing down the multitude of options is also helpful when making decisions. Of course, as a decision maker, you need to be aware of the underlying risks of making a certain decision, in order to be able to face the consequences, in case things don’t go your way.
3. Have high emotional intelligence
Emotional intelligence, in simple terms, is the capacity to recognize the emotions of yourself as well as those of others. It is a kind of intelligence that helps people in social interactions and it is of high importance when it comes to leading and directing a group of people. As a project manager, you need to be able to deal with other people’s emotional states and manage your own emotions in the time of turmoil. This will help you in the areas mentioned below:
a. Conflict management
When two or more of your team members are running into a conflict that they cannot solve themselves, you intervene and solve the issue effectively and while keeping your composure. This helps the team to move on from conflicts easily and focus on the project more steadily.
b. Keeping cool under pressure
When there is a problem or an argument among the team members, or with the project manager, if the project manager knows how to deal with emotional imbalances, he/she can keep calm under pressure and solve the issues he/she faces in a better state of mind.
c. Have empathy and understanding
In the case that someone is under stress or is having a personal problem, a project manager with high emotional intelligence can help him or at least understand his situation and empathize with him/her and get him through that problem in a way that minimizes its effect on the project.
4. Think out of the box
A project is like a mathematical problem and usually, there is more than one solution for every project. Some of these solutions are slower but less expensive, while others are more expensive but quicker. However, there usually is an optimal point where there is a good balance between different parameters of a solution.
Of course, the team members can come up with an optimal solution. But since the project manager has a full picture of a project in mind, he/she can come up with different solutions and recognize the best one to work with much easier than the rest of the team.
5. Have a working knowledge in the field
As a project manager, one needs to have enough technical knowledge in the field they are managing. It means that they require both domain-specific and domain-general knowledge. For instance, a project manager in the field of architecture needs to have both the essential knowledge of architecture as well as the knowledge of management and leadership. A project manager needs to know how a task is done in order to delegate it to a team member and solve its issues, leaving the details for the team to discover and solve.
6. Have leadership skills
Of course, a project manager is, in a way, a leader. She needs to know how to motivate her team to get the highest performance from them. She also needs to be a great motivator, so that she can inspire the team members to achieve their goal in the most effective way.
7. Critical thinking
A project manager not only needs to be good at creative thinking, he needs to be good at critical thinking as well. Critical thinking is a form of thinking that includes analyzing and synthesizing (and evaluating) information gathered from observation, experience, or other methods. A project manager with good critical thinking skills can learn from the mistakes and warnings on the way to achieve their goal, and make the best decisions by analyzing data in each step.
8. Focusing the team mindset toward a certain goal
Like an orchestra leader, project managers need to be able to harmonize team activity in order to create the best results. An effective project manager knows how to adjust one part of the team with the other parts and how to take the most benefit from this calibration.
Focusing the team toward a certain goal makes the individual activity more effective and the results more easily achievable.
There are lots of other more detailed qualities one can find in an effective project manager, but the major qualities that are important in 2020 are the ones we mentioned above and as a freelancing platform, we think that in order to make your projects finished successfully, hire a freelance project manager helps you a lot.