resource management tools

What Makes A Great Project Manager?


6 key traits every project manager should have

The quality of a project manager can determine the success or failure of a project – here’s what you need to succeed.

The success or failure of a business project rests largely on the quality of the project manager. Here are some of the key skills and attributes that every project manager should demonstrate in order to succeed.

Highly organised

Being a project manager involves juggling lots of different balls at once, so great organisational skills and the ability to multitask are essential if you want to complete the project on time and on budget. Luckily there are lots of good resource management tools out there that can help you to stay on top of various aspects of the project, so don’t be afraid to use these to your advantage.

Good communicator

Many failed projects can be attributed, at least in part, to poor communication, so in order for a project to succeed, it’s vital that project manager has excellent communication skills. A project manager should be able to clearly communicate the project goals, responsibilities, performance targets, expectations and feedback to the project team, as well as negotiating with people in the wider organisation to ensure the success of the project.


A strategic, forward-thinking mindset is an essential attribute for any successful project manager. You need to be able to look beyond the day-to-day tasks and look at the bigger picture. This will enable you to anticipate any potential problems or challenges that may occur further down the track, giving you time to develop effective solutions to mitigate these issues before they have a negative impact on the project.

Great people skills 

As a project manager, you’re expected to deal with lots of different people – from the various members of the project team, to stakeholders, clients and colleagues across the business – so it’s important that you have good interpersonal skills. In addition to this, a project manager should have good leadership qualities so that they can lead and motivate their team to success.


Despite best efforts, even the most highly-organised projects don’t always go completely to plan. Deadlines, resources and requirements can all change several times over the course of a project and, as project manager you have to be flexible enough to roll with the changes and adapt your work plan and priorities accordingly. You also have to be able to instill the same attitude in your team so that they don’t become demotivated by what can appear to be changing goal posts. 

Calm under pressure

It’s an unavoidable fact that in the world of project management, things can and do frequently go wrong – and how you deal with it can have a huge effect on the overall success of the project. A cool head and the ability to remain calm under pressure are hugely valuable traits for any project manager to possess. When things go wrong, a good project manager won’t give up or throw their toys out of the pram, and they certainly won’t take it out on their team – instead, they’ll try to remain composed and look at how they can harness any setbacks and turn them around to benefit the project.

This is by no means an exhaustive list and there are plenty of other qualities that make up a good project manager. But with these key attributes under your belt, you should be well on your way to project management success.

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