How to be Known as a Productive Project Manager

Productive Project Manager
Perception is said to be more vital than reality. I’ve always bristled at this cliché. As much as we wish to believe that our work product should really be judged on it’s advantages, the truth is that perception influences reality. How others see you turns into a major determining factor of your effectiveness as a project manager.
The Challenge
  • If you are viewed as weak and also unskilled, people won’t work with you. Individuals you need as subject matter experts on your project are struggling with identical challenges and uncertainties that you are. They are faced with highly large workloads and tend to be worried about saving their jobs. The very last thing they wish is to be associated with is a losing project. If they think you are a weakling and will be unable to move a project to a profitable result, they will go out of their way to "give you a swerve".
  • Some weakness could very well become a vicious cycle that feeds itself. As your status in the enterprise erodes, your skill to marshal people, materials and equipment to produce results is lessened. When management starts to know that you can’t get things done, you will see the good jobs being assigned to others. The people you need for your remaining projects will begin to lose interest and commitment to your struggles.
  • Unproductive people don’t last long in this age of downsizing and "doing a lot more with far less". As harsh as this might sound, a weak project manager is soon an out of work project manager.

The Answer
  • Be prepared. Keep all project records in good form. Make sure nothing is bad or mislaid. See to it that distributions get to the correct parties and are also sent in a timely manner.
  • Study the art of meeting facilitation. The project meeting is the stage. It’s your opportunity to amaze people with a winning overall performance. You should control the agenda, flow and result of your meetings.
  • Dress perfectly, at least one notch atop the workplace standard. This is an easy way to build the feel of professionalism.
  • Have statistics at your disposal. You’ve heard of "name dropping". Try "number dropping". People will see your use of dollar figures as well as statistics as proof of competence.
  • Don’t be a pushover with project group members. If you let them push back too easily on deliverables they won’t see you as a nice guy, but as a wimp. They are going to start blowing off your jobs because your work will be seen as less important than more crucial work they need to get done for more powerful project managers and executives. Your stuff will get back burner-ed most of the time. Project group members and colleagues will lose admiration for you.
  • You can follow aggressive schedules while still being seen as a decent people to work with. Don’t be afraid to be firm but fair. You have every right to insist that individuals keep their obligations to you.
  • Be an aggressive self-promoter and a consistent salesman for your projects. You will have to project a sense of believing in the tasks you are maintaining. Even more significant, people must see how much you believe in yourself.
Use these principals to protect your position in the firm. Although strength rules in our aggressive world, you don’t need to be a classic type-A character to achieve success. Project managers of any style or personality type can win the perception battle if they are willing to take the initiative to handle people’s opinion of their skills. Additionally, good project management templates will make your overall performance very much better.