Essential People Skills for Project Managers

Adriana Girdler

Things you need to know if you want to have a successful team You can’t run a successful project without an effective team. But how …

Things you need to know if you want to have a successful team

You can’t run a successful project without an effective team. But how can you guarantee that you’ll have an effective team?

The best way to ensure your team is effective as a project manager is to focus on your people skills to make sure you’re doing your part by being an effective leader.

Here are some people skills every project manager needs.


Negotiation is about finding solutions that are beneficial for everyone on your team. If you don’t negotiate, then people won’t feel heard and this is where conflict starts to build.

Take the time to listen to what people are saying. Don’t disregard them just because they disagree with something; take the time to understand why they don’t agree and what their proposed solutions are.


On every project, you have to adapt to change. As a project manager, you need to lead by example. In other words, if you’re adaptable to changed plans and missed deadlines, this example will reflect back onto your project team.

How do you remain adaptable?

Be open to change and be flexible. Know that change is going to occur and remain flexible with that change. You also need to be prepared – have a solid baseline plan so that when things change, you have a plan to work off of to help with the adaptability.

Also, stay positive. You can’t control time and you can’t control what people are doing. If you start reacting negatively, you’re going to spiral. If you’re positive, this will come through and your team members will pick up on it.

More people skills to improve

There are a few more people skills I want to highlight to ensure you have an effective team and project.

Head over to YouTube with me and we’ll keep chatting about essential people skills for project managers.

Meanwhile, if you really are committed to mastering your next project, do consider taking my SLAY Project Management online course where I show you step-by-step how to successfully manage a project, plus you get access to every template you will need, along with detailed video instructions on how to fill them out.

Adriana Girdler, PMP | Creator of Slay Project Management

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Adriana Girdler is a project manager, productivity specialist, entrepreneur, professional speaker, facilitator, visioning wizard, and author. As President of CornerStone Dynamics, Adriana is one of Canada’s prominent business productivity and project management specialists—helping both individuals and businesses do what they do, only better. She is a certified master black belt lean six sigma with over 20 years’ experience improving how companies work.

She also holds both PMP (project management professional) and CET (certified engineering technologist) designations. She’s a Tedx speaker, as well as a HuffPost and Thrive Global contributor. She has been interviewed on Global, CBC, CTV, CHCH, 680News Radio, Newstalk 1010, Sirius XM and published in the Globe and Mail and numerous industry magazines. WANT ADRIANA'S FREE ONLINE TRAINING? In 45 min, learn Adriana's 5 project management secrets she use on EVERY project. Sign up for the Free Webinar here: THE FAB FIVE FUNDAMENTALS OF PROJECT MANAGEMENT

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