Posted by: kerrywills | March 18, 2011

Being genuine and approachable

There are two traits that I look for in leaders – being genuine and being approachable. If a leader is not genuine and only out for themselves, people pick up on this very quickly and lose respect for that leader. The same goes for being approachable – if a leader yells whenever information is presented or is not around then people will stop going to them with information.

These are two key traits for Project Managers as well. Since our jobs is primarily focused on gathering information and organizing/communicating it, it is imperative that team members feel comfortable sharing it with us. If team members feel like we are not approachable or genuinely interested in the work then gathering this information will become difficult and that’s when “surprises” arise.

Some techniques that I use include…

  • Building relationships with team members so they can see my genuine interest and openness
  • Management by walking around – walking the floor to “see how things are going”
  • Showing gratitude for accomplishments – this goes a long way and doesn’t require much effort
  • Championing the team to senior management if they believe something needs to be fixed or is incorrect

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