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8 project management skills you need at work

Project management means, yep you guessed it, managing a project. That means overseeing a temporary task or group of tasks from beginning to end. The goal is to create a specific product, service or result.

Being able to manage a project is an important ability no matter what job you’d like to pursue in the future. Project management is actually a group of skills – many of which you might already have. And they are transferable skills that employers really want.

'From critical thinking to negotiation, these are the project management skills you need to have at work'

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In this guide we’ll look at 8 examples of project management skills, and ways to improve project management skills.

1. Budget management

The project manager has to keep on top of all the costs involved in a project. This will help make sure the project doesn’t cost more than it’s supposed to. You might already have some budgeting skills from saving your pocket money or learning about economics at school. Learn why it pays to manage your money.

2. Presenting

During the management of a project, you might be required to make presentations to your bosses about how the project is going. Or you might need to explain clearly to your team what tasks they are responsible for. You can improve your presentation skills in lots of different ways, from giving a talk in class to joining a politics club.

3. Time management

Improve project management skills by working on your
time management

One of the main examples of project management skills is figuring out how much time tasks will take, and making sure you’ve left enough time to do these tasks. Multi-tasking, rearranging your timetable and giving tasks to your colleagues (“delegating”) are all ways to stay on top of your time. Learn how to improve your time management skills.

4. Negotiation

When managing a project, you might have to request more money or time from your boss. This calls for top negotiation skills. You need to be able to clearly and persuasively make your point, while being respectful of other people’s needs. Find out more about why negotiation is important at work and how to do it.

5. Critical thinking

One of the most important project management skills is critical thinking. In a nutshell that means carefully and deliberately analysing information in order to understand things better. During project management, you’ll need to weigh up facts and figures in order to make sensible decisions. Try these four tricks to improve your critical thinking skills.

6. Communication

Giving your staff straightforward instructions is a crucial part of managing any project. Miscommunication can lead to lots of problems, so it’s important to be clear and open. This will help you build trust with customers and team members. Here’s how to improve your communication skills.

7. Organisation

Staying organised is an important part of project management

If your own approach to work is chaotic and disorganised, your project will be too!

Staying on top of every task is a super-important part of successful project management.

8. Adaptability

No matter how much you stay on top of tasks, things can always change at the last minute. Part of managing a project is being flexible when problems happen, and be able to find creative solutions. Find out how being adaptable can help you at work.