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Project Managers and Functional Managers - Essay Example

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Project Managers and Functional Managers Insert Customer’s Name Insert Name of Institution 9th March 2012 Outline I. Definitions of project manager and functional manager a. Introduction to paper b. Definition of project manager c. Definition of functional manager II…
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Project Managers and Functional Managers
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"Project Managers and Functional Managers"

Download file to see previous pages Project managers have more critical leadership challenges b. Project managers have multifaceted teams c. Project manager use synthesis, functional managers use analysis IV. Skills and competencies of project managers a. Traditional skills and competencies b. Emerging skills and competencies V. Project Managers and Functional Managers There is a greater emphasis on project management techniques in the business world today. This is because of the unique value that project management brings to certain aspects of the life of the organization that includes change management, product development, and marketing. Many businesses recognize that instead of relying on the functional managers to see specific projects through, it is better to organize such aspects under project managers. A project manager is the person who heads a team that handles a specific project that has a time limit, and which has verifiable resource limits (Flannes & Levin, 2005). Project managers participate more as team leaders than as bureaucratic entities. They normally work with cross-functional teams with members picked from various backgrounds to bring diversity to the project team. A functional manager on the other hand exists to coordinate the functions of an institution on ongoing basis. Normally, a functional manager will be responsible for the day-to-day operations of the department they head (Meredeth & Mantel, 2011). They tend to be in charge of departments like finance, accounts, human resource, and security, among others. It is important to note that functional managers may also serve as project managers for small-scale projects in the firm, which do not warrant the establishment of a separate project team. Normally, functional managers graduate into project managers when the need for project managers comes up in the firm. However, more and more organizations hire project managers at entry level because of the consistent nature of project operations in many companies. Most companies in the IT and construction industries, for instance, operate under project regimes, hence they keep permanent project managers in their firms. Comparison of Project and Functional Managers There are some important similarities between project managers and functional managers. The first on is that they both manage people. More than anything else, they have a responsibility to ensure that the people under them are working towards achieving the overall aims of the organization. This makes them leaders to a varying degree in the organization. Secondly, they require technical competence in the functional role that they perform, or in the project area that they are in charge. Both types of managers need a substantial amount of appreciation of the issues that they deal with. In most firms, both managers will report to senior management of the company. Depending on the hierarchy, a project manager will more often be senior than a functional manager if the firm uses the progression described earlier. However, in other cases, these managers form part of the management team and interact t as peers. Another key characteristic that defines both project and functional managers is that they have specific tasks to accomplish. It is their role to deliver certain aspect of the organizations mandate and hence each of them answers for the tasks over which they superintend. Finally, both types of managers have resources at their disposal. The resource allocation procedures normally vary from the way departments get ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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