Do women make better Project Managers?

Aug 19
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Project Management has long been a male-dominated profession but we are seeing progressively more women taking the reins. Research out of the UK indicates as little as 28% of project professionals are women and don’t stay in the field as long as their male counterparts- 43% of women had been in the profession less than 5 years where this was only true of 24% of men. 

The evolving nature of the project, program and portfolio management space means there is a growing opportunity for women to step into those leadership roles. 

There are five key reasons women make great Project Managers, as outlined by Thinking Portfolio:

They’re great communicators

Women are usually excellent verbal communicators but they’re also well-attuned to non-verbal queues in body language, listening and displaying empathy. Research suggests women have a greater amount of the ‘language protein’ in their brains as compared to men. Staff want their manager to feel heard, understood and appreciated. Communication facilitates relationships built on trust and encourage long-term loyalty. 

They can create environments for people to thrive

Often having natural nurturing instincts, women are well-equipped to foster teams and empower individuals through a combination of constructive feedback and uplifting support. Women are inclined to build cooperative relationships which can be more successful than the ‘alpha management’ style and translates to punctual project delivery and outstanding performance. 

They think about the other side

Usually more sensitive and empathetic, women have the ability to see things from a macro perspective. Understanding an alternative point of view can be a critical element to successful project management. 

Women are great multi-taskers

Juggling family responsibilities, self-care and work, women learn early-on the importance of time management and prioritisation. They can leverage this skill to handle multi-faceted deliverables with ease and efficiency. The ability to respond quickly and decisively to emerging priorities and tasks is a valuable skill of project management and leadership more broadly. 

They manage challenges effectively 

By fostering an open team environment in which staff are comfortable sharing their needs and challenges, the project manager can uncover potential problems before they escalate. Having to remain calm in crisis situations in a care-taking environment translates to the workplace whether they’re dealing with HR issues or clients. 

The Women in Project, Program & Portfolio Management Leadership masterclass offers specific strategies to build your career, develop leadership skills and strengthen project outcomes. The masterclass is running in Sydney from 11 – 12 November, Canberra from 14 – 15 November, Brisbane from 18 – 19 November, and Melbourne from 21 – 22 November. 

Lead by Katherine Robertson, a Meta Dynamics qualified and accredited coach, accredited Extended DISC consultant and member of the International Coach Guild, she will be joined by a host of some of the most successful women in Project management including:

  • Felicity Colbourne, Head of People Services & People & Culture PMO, Ausgrid
  • Eloise Power, Director- Portfolio Office, Separation and Simplification, AMP
  • Kristin Dazkiw, Head of Program Management, Marketing, Coles 

This is an opportunity not to be missed.

Submitted by Criterion Content Team

Criterion Content Team

This post has been written by the Criterion Conferences Content Team. Based in Sydney, we are an independent research organisation, producing over 90 conferences a year across a variety of industries. Our events, attended by thousands of senior delegates from the public and private sector, are designed to enrich, inspire and motivate. Our focus is on providing innovative, value adding content via our conferences and blogs like this are extension of that principle. You can view our conferences by visiting our website

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