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THE PROJECT MANAGER - PROJECT MANAGEMENT CHAPTER 11

The project manager

Many project managers work in IT, construction or installation technology. But other professionals can also work as project leaders. Often there is no vacancy at all. The company then chooses to temporarily remove someone from his normal work. Then the project leadership is something temporary. And a great opportunity to profile yourself inside and outside your organization.

Projects come in types and sizes. This means that you have to define a different strategy for different projects. And therefore also that you have to look for different project leaders. Not every project manager is suitable for every project. Where is your strength?

Organisation development

This type of project focuses on abstract results such as customer orientation, safety, internal entrepreneurship or quality. They are often ER goals : it should customizable there , safe there or goedkop there . The polite urgency of this type of project is not always high. That is a nice way of saying: such a project is a toy from the management.

Employees think it's all right. That does not always happen. At Essent, some employees died during maintenance in 2003. Safer working suddenly becomes important. That is therefore an important point of attention: make vagueness concrete.

The project leader must be able to make an abstract vision concrete for many people. He must be creative and people can predict something. But he must also be able to listen carefully in order to be able to establish a link between the needs of the organization and the management's dream. And finally, he must be able to motivate his employees : they are busy with something that their colleagues usually do not like.

System development

These projects are intended to develop a system. That is not always an automation system. An example: healthcare paths are developed in health care. These are standard routes for, for example, patients who get a new hip. A number of healthcare suppliers and financiers together make agreements about the care that is provided. That happens project-based. But the introduction of a new planning and reservation system in a halls rental center can also be the reason to develop a new way of working.

Support is important in this type of project. The project manager must above all ensure that the various users of the system are closely involved in coming up with it. You can create a fantastic system with a group of experts in silence, if the users do not want it, that work is for nothing. The project manager is therefore a bridge builder. He can handle a lot of information at once, he quickly understands how things work, he can lead people to whom he does not know the profession.

Product development

A new dessert, research into a new drug or the construction of a road: for this project leader, only the result counts for this type of project. A good product must be realized on time and within a budget. You can also see that in his approach. He can enthuse, he can lay the whip about it, he can focus his team on a certain goal, he can say no. This project manager is not easily satisfied.

The project leader as coordinator

In all these cases, the company can opt for a limited project leadership or an extensive project leadership. Specially in projects involving organizational development or system development, the project leader often fulfills a coordinating role and less of a managerial role. That is also somewhat in the nature of the problem. These projects are about creating support for change . The organization must also introduce the changes that the project group has made. When you as a project completely shield yourself from the outside world, chances are that the organization will not adopt your plans.

Change management

This Change Management course is intended for managers who have to "make a change" for a change. How do you tackle such a change process? How do you ensure that a change produces the intended result, even in the longer term?

But if the project leader sets up as a coordinator, the project can have more effect. In this role, the project leader will be satisfied with project employees who do the project alongside their regular work. These employees are often more representatives than experts. This causes a much longer turnaround time but at the same time also for a faster implementation. You can imagine that if within a hospital the Rehabilitation Department has contributed to a new approach to patients with a new hip, they obviously cooperate with that new treatment. If you develop a new approach as a project group in isolation, this willingness to change is much smaller. Make sure that you as a project leader make clear to your team in advance how you see your role. That prevents bad accidents!


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