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Some Tips to Increase Your Value as a Project Manager

Start today in demonstrating the value you bring to the organization!

Too often I hear project managers complain they aren’t valued in their organization. In some cases, I can’t say they are wrong – we all know how some organizations can be! In such situations, sometimes it is just time to move on to other opportunities where you are more valued. However, in other cases, I have asked the project manager, “What are you doing to demonstrate your value to the organization?”

If you want to be seen as a valuable member of the team – whether you are in a project manager role or any other role frankly – contribute to the organization above and beyond your daily responsibilities and be sure you understand the strategic goals of the organization – how does what you do align to the organization’s goals. From a project manager’s perspective – who frankly does contribute to the organization when he/she manages projects – frequently in a broader role if the project reaches across departments or business units, this includes:

  • Understand how every project you work on fits into the long-term strategy of the organization
  • Learn to speak the language of executives – avoid technical jargon, learn how to communicate effectively  (See the past post: Want to be Valued as a Project Manager)
  • Learn to listen – you’ll hear much more than just the words coming out of someone’s mouth – listen for meaning, nuances, perspectives
  • Business acumen: an understanding of the business to be able to make good decisions and good judgment calls
  • Build strong, effective working relationships with everyone in the organization – at every level
  • Be a problem solver – or, if you can’t solve a problem yourself, offer suggestions on how it might be solved when you seek assistance
  • Provide opportunities for your project team members to learn something new and expand their knowledge and skills
  • Mentor others
  • Capture lessons learned for every project and apply them to future projects – this saves you money and time because you implement best practices from others
  • Highlight the successes and how their contributed to the organization – the business impact
  • For the failed projects – explain what happened and what can be done to ensure it doesn’t happen again (your lessons learned)

Think of project management as strategic – it adds value to the organization when used to manage large initiatives. Yes – it’s tactical too, but executives want to know how it is linked to the strategic objectives of the organization. By focusing on tactics you can’t talk about the strategy.

What are your thoughts? What might you do to increase your value to the organization? What makes you a good project manager? We have just cracked the surface with this post – there are so many other ways. Share with others in the Comments field below!

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