Ever think of being a project manager who is just plain successful and famous. It is not something we often think about or let alone, what I would often think about but imagine for a moment of walking down the street and been asked for your autograph. People call your name and say that they really loved the project you worked on. It is not something that is associated with project management.
Let’s take a step back and firstly look at the things that would create a Famous Project Manager:
- The most famous project managers put the right people into the right places: – Anybody that is lured to fame through the art of project management will not do it themselves. When you have the ability to pick the right people for the right job, fame is just around the corner. Let’s be honest and say that nobody one can guide a project on his or her own, even if you are Superman or Superwoman. We all need help whether it be advising, and directing and asking for help is the sign of an excellent project manager.
- Famous project managers plan way in advance : – The mind-set of planning doesn’t happen without planning. Anyone who has watched any project rollout that involves complexity, engagement and the unmown, knows that planning is one of the keys to success. The most famous of project managers will plan, will project, and will see to it that a planning process is in place to carry it out. The most famous of project managers require long-range perspective, complete schedule mastery, and the insights brought from good scoping.
- Famous project managers make decisions based on data: – Good data is a necessity but good decisions based on good data is an art form. A project manager needs to walk a fine line with the decision that are to be made and those that are sometimes not pleased. There is a balance between using his people-pleasing skills and making decisions that are not bought into. This leads to tension and the most famous of project managers can strive on tension, nervousness and stress because they have data to back up and why.
- Famous project managers are not perfectionists: – This is one of my favourites and one that I believe is the essence of fame, fortune and an easy life as a project manager, do not believe in perfection. Perfection can be your worst enemy. Perfectionists can easily become another level of micromanagement and none of want nor strive to become micromanagers. Or do we? Perfection is an ideal goal for which to aspire, but an unrealistic end for every project. To become famous as a project manager, you must be willing to release this grip on perfection, and be willing to accept the good, bad and ugly by understanding different people have different approaches to delivering a project.
- Get out of the way and leave it to the experts: – In my career as a freelance project manager, I have learnt the tough way that there is people better placed that I to get the job done and my simple objective is not become an obstacle to their progression. Get out of the mantra of “Let’s Have a Meeting” environment which is really procrastination and let people do their job. To become famous at project management, you need to become an observer to what is going on rather than an accomplice to the problem.
So who do you consider the most famous project manager. Now for the drumroll and let us announce our top 3 (based on fame) project managers:
#3 Steve Jobs had unbelievable imagination and vision with a focus on the product and the value the product could hold in the market. He was also extremely passionate and fearless when it came to growing Apple and while many actions in his career were controversial, he had an extraordinary ability to push his people to the limits without going overboard.
#2 Ironman was wounded, captured and forced to build a weapon by his enemies, billionaire industrialist Tony Stark instead created an advanced suit of armour to save his life and escape captivity. Now with a new outlook on life, Tony uses his money and intelligence to make the world a safer, better place as Iron Man. He brings people with him and surrounds himself with the best to make the best decisions possible.
#1 Willy Wonka gave away his factory in the books are revealed to be because he has no living relatives and is getting too old to keep running it. He stepped aside for a new generation to take over and he couldn’t trust it with an adult who would likely change and ruin the wonder of his life’s work so they could do it “their way”, not his. He trusted in youth and wanted to find an honest child to whom he could entrust secrets to. This shows the great character and persona that Willy Wonka possesses.
So here is to you becoming famous and successful in project management but to do so, you need the skills and approach that can drive the project forward and not sideways. Here is to your becoming one of the world’s most famous project managers. We want to show you the skills, and now it is up to you to show the rest of the world.