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What is a Project Manager?

A successful project manager is responsible for projects deliveries on time, within budget and exceeding client expectations.  He should have a very good understanding of the client’s needs and requirements and be able to scope, plan and implement a project to the highest possible standards.


Project manager: role, responsibilities, skills, expertise, qualifications, training, certification, PRINCE2, PMI, expertise, Agile Project manager (scrummaster)

Topics

  1. What is the project manager role?
  2. What are the project manager responsibilities?
  3. What are the project manager skills
  4. What are the project manager expertise?
  5. What are the project manager qualifications?
  6. What are the project manager training?
  7. What are the project manager professional certifications?
  8. What is PRINCE2 certifications?
  9. What is PMI certifications?
  10. What is the project manager job market?
  11. What is an Agile Project manager?

What is the project manager role?

A successful project manager is someone that always has the big picture in mind.  He acts as the liaison person between all the various stakeholders.  His role is crucial in the successful delivery of a project, making sure that all outputs are delivered on time, on budget and within the agreed level of quality.  To be able to deliver successfully, a sense of urgency is recommended, as to optimize results with the given resources.

A successful project manager is someone that manages processes and not the actual people.  Each project member should know exactly what their responsibility is. In fact the project manager role is not to control the people but inspire them and make sure that together they achieve each milestones.  He should play the role of the leader and have a facility to communicate his vision with his team, clients or others stakeholders.  All his meetings and presentations should be clear and specific,  with a precise action plan to be followed.

A successful project manager is someone that can take a complex project and divide it into a specific set of tasks which can be easily achieved by the various members of the team (method also known as divide and conquer). Having a step by step approach, with precise milestones, will help the project completion and will make sure it is kept on track with systematic reviews and approvals.

What are the project manager responsibilities?

The Project manager key responsibilities include:

  1. Liaise between the client, internal team (creative’s, technical, management..)
  2. Negotiate scope, identify tasks
  3. Plan and estimate task duration and resource requirements, use of GANTT chart
  4. Schedules specify inter-task dependencies, critical path,
  5. Organize: assign resources
  6. Direct the team effort, monitor and control progress, timekeeping
  7. Assess project results and experiences.
  8. RISK management – manage unexpected events
  9. Use of Online Project Management tools to facilitate the workflow (Google Docs, Gmail, Wrike, Basecamp, JIRA)
  10. Use of Agile Development process (SCRUM, extreme programming)

What are the project manager skills

As successful project manager need to have a wide array of skills from project management specific to more specific technical with some creative and marketing expertise.

  1. Project management
  2. Business
  3. Technical
  4. Creative
  5. Content and Standards

The Project management skill set include effective communication, being highly adaptable in the face of change with a creative and innovative thinking and use of an agile methodology.  It is also important to be process driven, and always look  for system improvements.

Some key project management skills include:

  1. Adaptability
  2. Communication
  3. Creative/ innovative thinking
  4. Process orientated
  5. Use of Agile methodology

The business skill set consist of being a good team player, being client focused, efficient and organized.  I know how to take initiative and always manage projects to the highest possible standards.

Top 5 Business skill sets include:

  1. Good team player
  2. Client focused
  3. Goof Judgment and Dependability
  4. Initiative/ sense of Urgency
  5. High standards, efficient and organized

As far as the technical skills are concerned it is important to have a working knowledge of the Microsoft Office suite and be especially proficient in PowerPoint.   It is also a key thing to have a good understanding of Internet technologies(HTML, CSS,  JS,  Flash,  PHP, APIS’s), use of software  tools (Dreamweaver) and Content management system (WordPress).  It would be a bonus to have a good knowledge of  internet marketing  with such software as Google Adsense and Analytics.  It is key to make sure the all web projects are compatible with web standards and best practices. Finally hands on experience with graphics software such with Photoshop, flash and fireworks can be beneficial.

Top Technical skills include

  1. MS Office – Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook (Expert in PowerPoint)
  2. Knowledge of Internet technologies and software (Dreamweaver, Web 2.0 )
  3. Content management system experience (WordPress)
  4. Web development : HTML, CSS,  JS,  Flash,  PHP, Google APIS’s
  5. Google Adsense and Analytics

Finally a effective project manager should have  strong English language skills for editing content.

Top skills

  1. Graphics software experience with flash, fireworks and Photoshop
  2. Strong English language skills for editing content for grammar, spelling, context, etc.
  3. W3C web standards and best practices
  4. Good understanding of asset management business

What are the project manager expertise?

As successful project manager is responsible for the deliveries of projects on time, within budget and exceeding client expectation, as well as identifying and understanding the

clients’ needs and requirements.  The projects bottom line should always be to add value to the clients business and make a positive impact.    More precisely this mean delivering an end product that is on brief, meets the clients expectations, is user acceptance tested and ideally tested by an independent third-party so it is fit for purpose every time.

What are the project manager professional certifications?

The two most recognised Project management Certification in the world are Prince 2 and PMI.  Although not always required, having a accredited project management certification boost your chance of getting the most relevant jobs.

What is PMI certifications?

The certification from the Project Management Institute is one of the world’s most respected especially within North America.  It offers a variety of comprehensive certification programs for project practitioners of all skill levels and industry background. It is one of the best ways to get your foot in the door as qualified project manager or further develop your project knowledge and skills to enhance your professional career.

What is PRINCE2 certifications?

PRINCE2 is the other well-known and respected Project Management Certification, which is mostly available in the UK.  It is an acronym that stands for projects in controlled environments (version 2) and was initially developed by the UK government and is still widely used on a variety of large public projects.  It offers specific guidelines to manage control and organise any type of a project, divided into seven processes including

What is an Agile Project manager?

As today’s projects requirements are constantly changing and evolving,  a successful project manager should be able to adapt quickly.  A good approach is to use an agile methodology, which is a lot more flexible as opposed to a classical approach which tend to be more time consuming , rigid and bureaucratic.  Not only using an agile methodology should help the team become more adaptable, but the project manager himself should take a more agile approach as well.  This meaning, that he is able to do much more with less and be able to focus more on results.  He should be able to follow a plan of action, but be able to adapt and create a new one if change is require.