It’s time for PMs “Take the Bull by the Horn”

This is a brief post on soft skills and leadership that I believe is appropriate for project managers. Economically, we are facing difficult times. Leaders need to be responsible in these difficult times. Tom Watson, the founder of IBM, once said something similar: “It’sn’t the tough times that I worry about, it is the good times.” Watson was referring to the observation, which is undoubtedly true: In good times we tend get lazy, while we are sharpest in bad times.
Sometimes, good times can cover up for many errors. There are some projects that are deemed successful, but maybe they shouldn’t be. In difficult times, scrutiny increases. I believe we all should take advantage of this opportunity to “sharpen-up” in any way we can. Admit to your part in the problems. Even if it is painful or embarrassing. This will not only help the situation to move towards real solutions but it will also serve as a model for others.
In times of market difficulties, integrity is also a trait that can slip in good times. We need to be honest as project and program managers. Then, we need to show others how to accept responsibility by being transparent and making ourselves an example of integrity.
We can also take control of our skills. You can take care of yourself and others best by making extra effort during difficult times to improve your skills and to help others do the same through training and experience.
It is also said that “tough times make difficult people”. This is a chance to seize the moment. I would love to hear about difficult situations in this economic environment where PMs seize the moment.
Photo by shortfatkid @ Flickr