Key Skills for Product/Project Management

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Key Skills for Product/Project Management

This is a culture of specialists. I get that. Companies have problems that need special resources to address. I know that. I am one of them. Our company rescues failing or failed projects.

But it's not a surprise to read that there are some positions that have the same skill set as others. I came across an intriguing article recently that looked at the world of product managers penned by one of their own.

What quickly became clear to me is how closely the worlds product and project management hew to each other. Both are results-driven roles that share a goal of delivering products designed and produced to customer specifications.

The article featured the product management skills the author, Brian de Haaff, leans on most in his work. And as I read it, I saw that most of these skills are shared with successful project managers.

Here they are….
1. Vision
A clear vision means an understanding of the ‘why’ for product / project decisions.
Once determined this will be your driver for the project.
2. Motivation
It’s often been said that people don’t work for money. Sure the work can be satisfying enough, but what drives a team is the guidance provided by the leader, step by product / project step.
Success is incremental, and gaining momentum means being able to motivate yourself and others around a shared goal.
3. Prioritization
Once you’ve got a project on track and scheduled, it’s simply a matter of considering any prioritization requests against the vision for the project.
4. Transparency
Being candid about project challenges within the team is crucial. You are responsible for swaying your team, sharing plan changes and inspiring them through your comments and actions.

The kind of top level thinking in this article speaks to the importance of a vision at the core of every project / product.

How many times have you seen a product or project team fall apart almost before they get started?

All because they didn’t decide on a unifying vision.


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