Dilemma

Hard or soft skills?

If you decide you need to improve your skills, what is the area where you will focus first? One answer (best answer) would be to analyze your strong and week areas an start from there. But this is not the purpose of my dilemma. What change in your skill set would have the most dramatic impact? What is more important to have as project manager? To have excellent project management technical skills, to know perfectly all processes, tools,methods, framework and to be able to apply them flawlessly or to have outstanding soft skills, to be a leader, motivator, communicator? 
 
In my view the soft skills are the focus area. They have the biggest impact on the performance of the team and the support you get from upper management layers.

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Dilemma

Manager vs Leader

When I was first thinking to start a blog, one of the initial actions I took was to make a list of potential topics. Leader vs Manager was on top of my list as this is one of the topics I am thinking a lot. Since then I found a ton of articles, blogs and presentations on this subject. Many great ones. So I am not going to define what each of the roles means, what is best and how to be one. Instead I will try to cover a slightly different aspect. As project manager, most people would agree, you should be both a leader and manager. The dilemma is where to find the balance.

The answer depends on your abilities and preferences, the organization you work in, the project and the team. I believe that a good PM is the one that most easily adapt and is able to easily change the balance between the two. Ask yourself:

Am I primary a Leader or a Manager?

What others think I am?

What do  I like mostly to be?

Is this the best approach for myself, my company, my project?

What do I need to adjust? 
 
Sometimes asking this kind of questions can help you to perform better and increase the chances of success for your projects.

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