Magazine article PM Network

Great Expectations

Magazine article PM Network

Great Expectations

Article excerpt

Senior project managers should Live up to a higher standard.

It's often said that the main difference between the job description of a project manager and a senior project manager is the number of projects he or she runs, along with the projects' size and complexity.

Although these factors can come into play, that description does not adequately identify the differences.

I have certain expectations for senior project managers that I don't have for those who are less experienced:

1. Mentor less-senior personnel. There is no better way to learn a craft than with assistance from a mentor - especially when you're first starting out. Senior project managers should mentor those around them in aspects of the profession such as leadership, methodology, tools, people skills and navigating politics.

2. Evaluate performance. A senior project manager has the skills to know what is expected of a project manager and should be able to help evaluate that person's performance- especially since management often seeks their skills, opinions and recommendations.

3. Identify project management-related training needs. They should be able to evaluate the readiness of a project team or organization and then recommend the related training required to ensure the effective application of project management and leadership principles.

4. Conduct training. A senior project manager must be able to teach many of the skills required for the successful planning, execution, delivery and support of projects and their products or services. They must also qualify project management training vendors and monitor their delivery and effectiveness.

5. Perform project reviews. They should have the ability to either individually assess the health of a project or lead a small team in doing so. Part of this is to be able to net the review findings so that the most important problem areas, as well as most noteworthy areas, are clearly identified. …

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