Women and men are different, and this should be celebrated. It is certainly not a case of one sex being better than the other. Naturally, there are certain traits that men have and certain traits that women have. These characteristics can be used within the workplace to help both men and women flourish in any role they work in. Project management has been male-dominated for many years. However, more females are becoming involved in the industry, and this has had a positive impact on project management. With that being said, below, we are going to take a look at women in project management and what makes them so successful.
The increase of female project managers is resulting in fresh approaches in the way that projects are being managed and carried out. This involves a difference in terms of project reporting, coping with risks and challenges, motivating others, team development and composition, meeting style, communication style, and leadership style. Below, we are going to take a look at some of the traits that women have that tend to make them a natural choice for project management.
Creating a place for people to thrive
There is only one place to begin when it comes to the success of women in project management, and this is the fact that females are able to generate an environment that brings out the very best in people. Female project managers know how to groom their teams effectively. They have an innate ability to nurture their teams, helping to build up their skills, which will result in improved career growth for the individual in question.
It is important that employees receive the correct inputs and any sort of training that is needed. Women leaders tend to work effectively when it comes to collaborative projects. They are able to see the bigger picture and get others to work together toward a shared business purpose. Not only does this make the work environment a lot better, but it means that you are more likely to meet your project deliverables, be in terms of your time, resources, or anything else.
It is said that women are great at multi-tasking. A lot of females have the ability to multi-task effectively, which gives them the ability to change and deal with any unanticipated opportunities and risks. In a project, priorities tend to change. After all, this is the nature of business, isn’t it? Women are able to look at this from a pragmatic point of view and deal with any sort of changes to the budget, staffing, or other areas of the project. On the flip side, men are often more competitive than women. They are not as likely to accept something that they feel cannot be attained.
Aside from this, women also tend to have the ability and courage to challenge the status quo at present, and they can do so in a manner that is fair and constructive. They know how to handle risks and challenges effectively. These are all incredibly important skills for project management.
In addition to the traits and qualities that have been mentioned so far, women are also good at motivating others. The reason for this is because women know when to show sympathy and empathy, and they also tend to take a greater personal interest in others.
Female project managers tend to build teams that are motivated and loyal, and they are willing to be adaptable and flexible too. On the other hand, men have a tendency to motivate people by encouraging competition amongst members of the team and getting them to work successfully while the pressure is on.
Last but not least, we have communication! If you look at the different training courses for project managers, you will notice that many of them place great emphasis on communication skills. This is good news for women, as they tend to be excellent at communication. Someone who is effective in communication will be able to create a better team atmosphere. Team members will feel more at ease because their roles, responsibilities, and risks will be effectively and clearly communicated, and there will be more transparency as well.
When an individual is able to have informal conversations are frequent intervals, it means that issues can be dealt with straight away, i.e. as soon as they arise. You do not have to worry about them having a detrimental impact on the project. Overall, projects are going to have a much higher chance of success when honest and open conversations occur.
What are the barriers when it comes to females working in project management?
Hopefully, you now have a better understanding of some of the key traits that are required in project management and the different reasons why females make outstanding project leaders. However, there are also some barriers that can get in the way, and these need to be addressed.
One of the most common barriers when it comes to the development of female project managers is what is known as the ‘glass ceiling.’ This prevents women who have the correct qualifications from proceeding into the upper rungs of the corporate ladder, irrespective of their achievements or qualifications.
In addition to this, there are other barriers that are worth thinking about as well, including absent support for females who want to integrate work with their family life, for example, work from home for some of the week. There also tends to be a lack of understanding and support on behalf of male superiors and colleagues when women prioritise their family responsibilities.
Now you have more of an insight into the role of women in project management and what makes them so successful. From being good communicators to effective motivators, there are many different reasons why women tend to make good project managers. Of course, this is not to say that men cannot be effective in project management – a great many have brought real change to the role. But it is definitely good to see that more females are embracing their career choice.