The career field for project managers is rapidly expanding; perhaps because in the working world everything can be classed as a project and so there is never any shortage of work for experienced professionals! But how do you become a great project manager and stand out from the competition? The answer is found in the skills you can offer because it is these attributes that will help you get the job done on time and within budget. Both soft and hard skills can be gained through completing training for project managers. Before you know it, you will be quickly climbing the career ladder of success when each successful project under your belt leads to the next!
It’s not only the requisite skills you need but how to present them on a resume that will get you to the interview stage so firstly – let’s look at the list:
Skills needed for project managers are not exhaustive but the main ones fall under the headings of soft and hard with some natural overlap. Soft skills generally relate to people skills and hard skills are less personal involving planning objectives and non-human resources.
- Effective communication
- Willing collaboration
- Critical and creative thinking
- Time management
- Assertive decision making
- Problem solving abilities
- Risk assessment and negotiation
It is worth nothing that the most important skill in this list is that of problem-solving abilities. The role of a project manager IS to be a problem solver and by having the leadership qualities to lead your team through problem-solving sessions; you will already have the framework in place to trouble shoot any situation that threatens project success.
Hard skills including technological knowledge
- Project scheduling including strategic planning
- Expertise in the project subject matter
- Project lifecycle management
- Knowledge of software such as Agile
- Knowledge of methodologies such as Scrum
- Meeting facilitation
- Financial planning
- Performance tracking
- Awareness of inch and scope
Your CV should ideally contain some key words from the above lists whilst still reading naturally and it also helps if you have some examples of experience or scenarios to back them up. After all, you need to have the skills to be a project manager, but you also need to audition them effectively in order to get you noticed and hired for the job. Picking out a few key skills that are relevant to the position you are applying for as well as any transferable skills you have can be further highlighted by any qualifications or certification you hold.
Although we talked about problem solving being the most important skill for a project manager; closely entwined is the skill of adaptability and this is one you will certainly want to stress. Employers want to not only know you can lead a project but be reassured you can reach the finish line despite any problems along the way.
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