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Critical Analysis of Personal Traits of Project Managers Assessment 1 Answer

Assessment 1 - Module Discussion Topic 1-2: Project Management Competencies and Project Selection Methods - 15%

  • Based on your current understanding of global project management, critically analyse particular personal traits or competencies that are important for project managers to possess in order to be most effective  (250 words)  -  you should refer to the PMI Project Manager Competency Development Framework in Module 1 for the personal traits - 
  • Briefly describe a project of which you are aware, either through personal experience, observation or from your own research. Explain the methods that could appropriately be used in project selection and their processes  (250 words)

Answer

Critical analysis of the personal traits of project managers

The Project Manager Competency Development (PMCD) framework identifies multiple dimensions (Knowledge competencies, performance competencies and personal competencies) that are essential in assessing the capability of a project manager in leading any project (Cartwright & Yinger, 2007). 

Communication: Aga, Noorderhaven & Vallejo (2016) are of the opinion that effective communication with project members and audience enables a project manager to maintain the lines of communication. Further, active listening and responding to stakeholders properly ensures the effectiveness of a project manager. Also, improved quality of communication plays a crucial role in determining the effectiveness of a project manager (DuBois et al. 2015).

Leading ability: A project manager also needs to be a leader for fostering a better environment for high performance. In this regard, DuBois et al. (2015) mentioned that the ability to maintain and motivate team members and influence others is crucial for a project manager to remain active.

Managing ability: As commented by Hornstein (2015), the ability to manage people effectively influences the result of the project. Some ways which project managers can focus on better management by resolving conflicts in a team, building and maintaining a team and capability to achieve project success are also crucial for project managers in leading a project.

Cognitive ability: Application of relevant project management tools and techniques, improvement of project outcome and ability to resolve issues can also be considered as essential elements of cognitive ability that are expected in a project manager (Cartwright & Yinger, 2007)

Effectiveness: Maintaining the involvement and motivation of project stakeholders and resolving project problems are also essential competencies that project managers require. As commented by Feger & Thomas (2012), the project managers need to make use significant resources, tools and techniques to effectively manage people. Sheer commitment towards the project, managing a diverse workforce and an integrated attitude to the operation are also crucial aspects that a project manager needs to possess.

Explanation of methods that can be used in the Australian Cargo Service Project selection and their processes

The Australian Customs Service spent approximately $205 million from the year 1999 to 2006 to implement an Integrated Cargo System (ICS) for maintaining a seamless flow of service (Booz, 2006). Although, by the end of 2005, the project team became unable to fulfil the criteria, which made this project as one of the major IT project failures in Australia. Therefore, multiple reasons have been identified behind the failure of this project, such are:

  1. The project team was incapable of mitigating project risks through a scheduled plan (Philipson, 2005)
  2. Sensitive data was leaked from the system
  3. Quality issues with third-party software
  4. Inadequate training of  employees with the new system (Booz, 2006)

Consequently, The Australian Customs Service should have been focused on quantitative methods to select the project. Thus, a benefit measurement method such as payback period analysis might help the project sponsor from refraining the huge loss. It is identified that payback period ensures the time when an investment of a project is starting to recover. Therefore, the low payback period of any project determines the profitability of this project. As the above-stated project took almost seven years, hence, long payback period restrained the project for becoming successful or profitable (Booz, 2006)

Apart from this, the project manager should have also maintained the communication process amongst different stakeholders of this project. Hence, the lack of communication catalyzed the failure of this project. As a result, Customs issued a statement blaming customs agents, importers and other key members of the project for the downfall of this project (Noorderhaven & Vallejo, 2016). In this context, it is necessary to say that proper planning of the project, budget allocation and effective communication between stakeholders might have made this project successful.

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