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Leadership: Project Managers of Technology Projects

1. What is the Role of the Project manager? Why is leadership so important for project managers?

2. What makes information technology projects differ from other types of projects? How should project managers adjust to these differences?

3. What does it mean to take a systems view of a project? "How does taking a systems view of a project benefit project management?"

4. What is the main technique used for verifying scope? Give an example of scope verification on a project

5. What is the critical path and why is it so important for project manager to keep a strong focus on it?

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1. What is the Role of the Project manager? Why is leadership so important for project managers?
Project managers are leaders who guide its members in achieving the goal of the project using the knowledge and experience they have in managing various projects. They understand the similarities of these projects and their role in helping the organization succeed. They are considered as change agents as they inspire a sense of shared purpose in his team members. They motivate their members to accept the challenges together with the responsibility to drive the best business outcomes. They are familiar with change and are comfortable with the complex and dynamic business environments. Project managers need to be very good leaders as a very important role is cultivating their people's talents and skills for the good of the whole team and the organization. They encourage their members to communicate and treat each other with mutual trust and respect. They must also maintain a spirit of trust and communication with the stakeholders and the sponsors who will benefit of the results of the projects. The project managers have various broad and flexible techniques and methods to resolve complex activities into simpler tasks which can be monitored and controlled. They find ways to assess and improve the outputs of their labor so that the goals of the organization can be successful.

Project management is a unique discipline. Hence, project managers need to cultivate specific skills that are unique to project management. His leadership skills should be that of a collaborative style instead of authoritative because his primary role is to be responsible for managing the project rather than managing the team members. One thing he needs to do is to make sure that the key stakeholders are engaged throughout every stage of the project. Also, during the planning stage, he has to create a culture of cooperation to encourage the team members to share their ideas and suggestions. In the implementation of the project, the manager should be able to provide guidance and support to his members to keep them until it is completed. He must be approachable and available to assist the members as they go through the changes in the requirements of the project. Also, the project manager needs to be knowledgeable and experienced in almost all areas/departments related to the project. It is a must that he is well-versed in technical skills otherwise they can't be effective in what they do. Leadership skills with technical and critical thinking skills as well as teaming skills are very important for project managers. Furthermore, it is more difficult to lead a project team composed of global teams with individuals from varied cultural backgrounds than to manage members of the same location or having the same nationality or cultural background.

References as of November 11, 2014:
http://www.pmi.org/About-Us/About-Us-Who-are-Project-Managers.aspx
http://www.villanovau.com/resources/project-management/leadership-skills-project-management/#.VGIbTWfETK8
http://www.projectsmart.co.uk/project-managers-need-leadership-skills.php

2. What makes information technology projects differ from other types of projects? How should project managers adjust to these differences?
Information technology (IT) projects are prone to failure because of its nature. Technology is difficult and it involves a lot of skills to make an IT project successful. IT projects require special IT project management skills and support from top management is essential for its success. ...

Solution Summary

This solution discusses the role of managers and leadership skills that are needed. Information Technology (IT) projects are described and explained and reasons why most of them fail are provided. There are also suggestions to prevent failure. Systems View of a project are described and it discusses the importance and benefits to project management. Concepts like the verifying scope is explained and steps in the critical path method are defined.

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