Project Manager's Types of Leadership
A project manager should exhibit two types of leadership as described earlier
in this article. These are transactional and transformational. The leader should
guide the team members by identifying their roles and responsibilities for the
project. In addition, he should inspire the team members to successfully complete
the project tasks for the good of the project. "The best project managers are
outstanding leaders. They have vision, they motivate, they bring people together,
and, most of all, they accomplish great things" (Verzuh, 1999, p.25).
Project managers must have integrity-honesty and trustworthiness. A key success
factor is getting members of a team to trust each other and trust the project
manager in order to work well with each other (Martin, 1976, p.45). When indecision
or conflict arises, if the project manager is considered to have integrity, the
others will accept his actions more easily. " He will be regarded as having made
the decision that best serves the interests of the project and harmony will prevail"
according to Martin (1976, p.45).
Project managers must have competence with the project technology and business
management. Those working on the project and the administration above him will
respect him and have more confidence in his abilities to make the correct decisions
for the project (Martin, 1976, p.46). Basic management skills with competence
in business management are a necessity. The project must be managed using good
management techniques that are consistent with the organization's management
Other key characteristics for a project manager include alertness, quickness,
good listening, imaginative versatility, and flexibility. Martin (1976) explains
" the project manager must be ready at any time to modify any existing plan for
a better one." Flexibility "implies a tough willingness to change plans in light
of current realities, always with the best interests of the project in mind"
(p.48). The project manager must have a good work ethic and a high energy level.
Project management requires more than a 40-hour workweek and interaction and
availability to many people in and outside the organization. To be successful
the project manager must be in "top form" most of the time (p.49).
Stanley E. Portney (2001, p.307) provides ten tips for project managers:
- Be a why person
- Be a can do person
- Do not assume
- Say what you mean; mean what you say
- View people as allies, not adversaries
- Respect other people
- Think big picture-keep perspective
- Think detail
- Acknowledge good performance
- Be both a manager and a leader