Perfect PM - part 1
What attributes should characterise a good translation project manager?
The quality of a translation is affected not only by the software, but also the manner of project management by a manager.
They manage every stage of work, from its start until its completion. When we start cooperation with customers, they often ask us about skills as well as strengths and weaknesses of our managers. A good project manager is a guarantee of customer satisfaction.
Having several years of experience resulting from the role of a project manager and an ordinary employee, I created a list of the most important attributes which should characterise every good translation project manager.
Multitasking – nobody will be surprised by the fact that a day of a person in charge of a translation project is filled with work. Coordination of translators' tasks, supervision over and management of multiple projects in different languages is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to day-to-day activities. A good project manager effectively manages people and project elements. They are able to carry out numerous tasks in a short period of time and appropriately coordinate all stages of work. Multitasking skills of a person responsible for project supervision have not only an enormous impact on the success of work, but also on the position and perception of a manager by their colleagues.
Communication skills – without a doubt, timeliness and results of translation projects depend on the clarity of messages and the time of their issue. Being a translation project manager, one has to have the ability to communicate effectively in order to understand one's customer and be able to lead a team of translators.
Good problem-solving skills – as in real life – problems may arise in a project. What counts during translation is the way a project manager solves problems and how it will contribute to strengthening of business relationships.
In a nutshell, a good manager finds or creates solutions, and does not comes up with excuses. Even if they face a long-term, arduous project, they should think outside the box and provide solutions which will bring measurable benefits for all concerned.