The Joys and Sorrows of a Project Manager’s Work

Date:3/17/2021
Length:3 minutes
Author:Adam Romaňák
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It's time for a bit of introspection. Think with us about what you really enjoy about the role of project manager and what, on the contrary, is getting on your nerves when managing projects. The job of a project manager is not an easy one.

For a start, your work is influenced by a number of external factors, you must constantly learn, interact with the environment, and take considerable responsibility. Despite this, many of you are embarking on this career path, and others are asking us what it is like to work on project management .

We have therefore asked ourselves what we like best about project management, and on the other hand, what we could definitely do without it. But let's start with the positives.

Your Team

As a project manager, you will be in charge of a group of people with different qualifications but an identical goal. Your colleagues will quite possibly differ in nature, origin, or culture, but they will bring with them invaluable diversity of perspectives.

If you set up the roles in your team properly and continue to work with them, this diversity will help you to manage projects better. Additionally, if you give your people a chance to excel and remove unpleasant obstacles from their way, you may find their true potential.

From Plan to Implementation

As project managers, we have the opportunity to monitor the project’s progress from assignment and planning to implementation and evaluation , or possibly even its further existence. We must thus realize that, unlike many other professions, we do not suffer from separation from the result or the broader context of our work.

Additionally, we can observe the creation of something out of nothing, whether it is repetitive projects for which we already have our own templates or completely new and unusual challenges.

Added Value

The project’s ultimate goal is to deliver business results. People who manage projects need to find a balance between small details and a broader vision. They create a bridge between the decision-making part and the performing part of the company.

If this role is played correctly, the project manager creates decisive value for the organization, and this is immediately recognized.

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The role of project manager also has its downside. So what problems do we face most often?

All Responsibility, No Authority

The project manager’s work comes with a built-in internal split. In this position, you carry personal responsibility for entire projects and you must control  your team, but you still do not have sufficient managerial authority or competencies that you would desperately need from time to time. This fact is even harder to bear as, thanks to your position, you know exactly where you could use these resources.

Level of Uncertainty

A major obstacle that project managers have to overcome on a daily basis is the high level of uncertainty. Despite thorough planning and the necessary agility of management , the implementation of parts of the project or its entire result is beyond our own control, and even if we do our job properly, we do not achieve inner peace when we think of some of the delivered results.

Negotiations about Everything

A project manager must act as a “clutch”, a link between parties. Between the client and the company, between the management and the executive. In doing so, project managers transfer key information from one side to the other and usually find themselves in a position where they must defend one side against the other. Ultimately, this is also part of the role’s added value, as we have already mentioned.

But that constant negotiation, explanation, and chasing someone  can at times be exhausting. Finally, we can admit that the role of a project manager has its pros and cons. At the moment when you are expected to manage, monitor, plan, and evaluate  the work of any team, you are guaranteed to face quite a few challenges.

In the end, this work is largely about communication with participating parties. You may thus count on the fact that the human factor and corporate culture will unconditionally be reflected in the practice of project management. Quite possibly, they will eventually decide whether the pros outweigh the cons in your case.

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