So I’m a couple of glasses of wine into my journey to Philadelphia for this year’s Digital PM Summit and there I was watching my guilty pleasure First Dates when the maitre d’ Fred explains his role and I’m there like that’s exactly what a good PM is. Hear me out…
“I need to be discreet, I need to be fast, swift, efficient. I’m like the SAS, I’m behind enemy lines, seen not heard. I’ve done the job and you don’t even know I was there”
Good PMs are
When there’s bad news that needs to be delivered, it’s normally on the PMs head to deliver it.
Be that, your project isn’t going to be delivered on time, we need more budget, you’re making it difficult for us to do our job.
PMs are often involved in tough conversations. If a client is unhappy because of a bad deployment, a lack of testing or the number of design iterations it’s taking to get it right. 9/10 you’ll get the brunt of it.
Ultimately you’re there to protect the team.
Protect your team from negative conversations that may de-motivate them. Your job is to keep your team motivated, help them work to their strengths and create a positive working environment, minimise unproductive distractions so that they can get on with doing what they do best.
As Nancy Lyons once said
Project Management is like air quality. If you can see it, it’s probably killing you.
PMs are often invisible, in the background, taking notes, sending emails, updating spreadsheets, facilitating meetings but if they’re not there you’ll know about it.
Fast & Swift
Managing projects can change from day to day, a project could be running smoothly one minute and then all of a sudden feel like it’s taken a wrong turn.
It’s important for PMs to be one step ahead, adaptable and open to change at a moments notice.
PMs need to be resourceful with their time and those around them.
They have to ensure any contact with the team has a clear purpose & that meetings are kept to time.
Your teams time is precious, treat it that way.
What do you think are the best characteristic of a good PM?