Published here November 2018

Background | Upon First Introductions 
Perfecting the Perfect Handshake | Success in Dining and Similar Social Occasions


If you are keen to become a project manager and manage projects through a team of supporters, you have to become a leader that exudes leadership qualities. Now, you can find a gazillion articles on "leadership" on the Internet and such articles range from the definition of "leadership" covering: Decisiveness; Awareness; Focus; Accountability; Empathy; Confidence; Optimism; Honesty; and Inspiration and the like.[2] Or leadership may be portrayed as "the activity of leading a group of people or an organization or the ability to do this",[3] which actually sounds more like the work of a project manager.

Or again you may simply decide to go by following the advice I published back in 1987, namely "plan, organize, execute, monitor and control."[4] And then you decide on which type of leadership is most appropriate, such as:

  • Coercive: Leaders demand immediate compliance.
  • Authoritative: Leaders mobilize people toward a vision.
  • Affiliative: Leaders create emotional bonds and harmony.
  • Democratic: Leaders build consensus through participation.
  • Pacesetting: Leaders expect excellence and self-direction.
  • Coaching: Leaders develop people for the future.

Further, you may decide to select a style according to the nature of your intended project, its background (is it political?), the make up of your team, and the urgency of the challenge.[5] For example:

  • Bureaucratic: where leaders focus on following every rule.
  • Charismatic: in which leaders inspire enthusiasm in their teams and are energetic in motivating others to move forward.
  • Servant: whose leaders focus on meeting the needs of the team.
  • Transactional: in which leaders inspire by expecting the best from everyone including themselves.

However, what seems to be missing in all of this is any discussing of personal appearances. For example, it is said that a person can sum you up upon first acquaintance in about thirty seconds. This is particularly significant when going for an interview for a position as project manager. That thirty seconds determines whether you even get to seriously discuss the job you are seeking. But the same also applies when meeting members of your team for the first time. They will accept your credibility according to whether you look and behave like a leader.

The following pages provide advice on two specific situations or interactions.


1. By Max Wideman
2. See
3. See
4. See
5. See
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