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Seven Habits of True Project Leaders: Habit #4

This series highlights the 7 habits that are deeply ingrained in project leaders who are capable of consistently delivering project success. Our last post discussed risk management.

Habit #4: Strong Attention to Detail

When people think of a leader, they don’t generally think of someone who dots the Is and crosses the Ts. When managing projects, the ability to flawlessly execute on the minutia is crucial.

 Many project managers consider this administrivia below their pay grade, but it takes a strong attention to detail to establish the cadence and rhythm that is fundamental to project control.

While this is not a quality that most see as a “soft skill,” it is not easily found on a resume and it is a habit that a project manager either has or does not have. The organization must understand the reality of what it takes to do execution right and value nailing the administrative detail. A feasibility assessment can point an organization in the direction to have a realistic environment to do control successfully.

Nurture:

Are your project managers asked to do too much? Multitasking breeds mistakes and oversights. Even the most detail-oriented managers have a point where they cannot do everything asked of them. As a result, they go into survival mode to do “good enough.” As the slate of projects gets larger in relation to the pool of project managers, the organization needs to ask itself “Are we better off asking our PMs to manage seven projects tenuously or to have full control of four?”