There seems to be frequent times on a project that we need to realign the team to the overall project vision. MGV had to sell the idea of why focusing on a collaborative solution is more important than the short-term pain it’s causing. This often boils down to the project manager’s ability to sell the team members on the vision. The ability to “sell” (influence) is a important part of a PM’s capabilities. Demands to have something fixed quickly need to be weighed against the project’s mandate. Those conversations are at times unpopular but it’s important that the project manager show leadership at those points and sell the team on the mandate..
Project Leadership: What Is It?
When it comes to the definition of leadership PMI (the Project Management Institute) defines leadership as being about change. Working primarily to establish a direction, aligning people, and inspiring and motivating them. Similarly, John C. Maxwell, writer of 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership quotes that “leadership is not about titles, positions or flowcharts. It is about one life influencing another.” For a project manager it’s passionately grasping the vision given to him or her by the organization and influencing others to follow that vision.
Of all the traits, humility is one that stands out because self-serving pride is so inherent to our nature. Humility isn’t something to be achieved, humility is something to be lived. Humility translates into a modest recognition of our abilities and a view that often thinks of others better than oneself. It doesn’t mean a lack of confidence in one’s abilities, rather a focus on others. Humility isn’t thinking of oneself less, humility is thinking of oneself less often. The team understands this by osmosis from the project manager. This then translates into a much better working relationship and a high degree of trust.