Leadership is critically important for any team project to be a success. As the project manager he/she should have extremely good leadership skills along with many other skills such as motivation and communication skills which have been discussed in length by my team members. Below are ten critical leadership principles every project manager should master.
Establishing a vision
The project manager must establish a vision for the project for his/her team members. If the team members know what they are working towards they can complete the task more efficiently. The project manager must ensure tasks are being complete and lead the team in the proper manner.
The project manager must promote and ensure ethical behaviour within the project team such as trustworthiness, dependability and honesty. The project manager must also identify irritable and uncooperative behaviour by the team members and eliminate such behaviour. Failure to do this will usually result in a dysfunctional team.
Of the leadership skills of the project manager, proactivity ranks amongst the most critical. A project manager who tackles issues, such as cooperation within the team, head on establishes his/her power. As a result the project team rallies around him/her.
Rather than telling his/her team members to go and do the work necessary, the project manager should help his/her team members. Any complex issues are referred to the project manager which increases the respect given to the project manager.
People based approach
A successful leader invariably adopts a people based approach, this meaning placing people first over machinery. The project manager helps team members to improve on their weaknesses rather than ignore them
Another important leadership principle for the project manager is to facilitate team learning. This is where team members truly interact with each other to get a true and better understanding of the project involved. If the leader conducts this principle it can make the execution of future projects easy.
This is where the project leader encourages team members to participate in the decision making process. It is one of the most popular leadership styles in project management. Team members feel valued as their inputs are taken into consideration when the decision making process is undertaken.
Delegation is one of the most important leadership skill for project managers. The project manager needs good communication skills to make team members understand the importance of requirements the project curtails such as a deadline date and inspire them with the rewards of achievement.
The leader of the project needs to motivate and inspire his/her team members and lead from the front. The leader must also take action if problems occur. The leader gives their team members all the necessary tools to complete the project such as freedom. The leader then makes the team members responsible and accountable for their work.
Simplicity is the most underestimated leadership principle. KISS can stand for “Keep it simple, stupid”,” Keep it short and simple,” or “Keep it simple and straightforward.” The project manager’s role should be to keep the project as simple as possible i.e using simple language when communicating with team members, etc.
By adopting the ten leadership principles stated above the project manager can become an effective leader.