Managing a team of project managers

Introduction: Managing a team of project managers. Managing a team of project managers is a complex and multifaceted task that requires a comprehensive understanding of project management principles, leadership skills, and a strategic approach to achieving organizational goals. Team management is a crucial skill for any project manager.

You need to empower and motivate your team by demonstrating effective leadership. You need to ensure that the team’s potential is fully utilized without overwhelming the team. It’s a blurred line, but with experience, you’ll know how to treat it carefully.

In this article, I will break down the critical aspects of managing a team of project managers, covering topics such as team composition, roles and responsibilities, communication, leadership, performance evaluation, and best practices.

Managing a team of project managers
Managing a team of project managers 2

What is Team Management?

Team management is about working with your team to help them collaborate and be more productive. It also refers to activities and tools that allow teams to work better together. This means managing assignments, schedules, workloads, and more.

To best manage teams, you must adjust workloads to maximize your resources, help set goals, facilitate teamwork, communicate clearly, and monitor performance. It also means spotting and solving problems before they become problems that side-track the project.

Therefore, team management is a daily activity when running a project. It touches almost every phase and process of project management. For example, what you do is fundamental to team management when scheduling a project and prioritizing tasks.

Why is team management critical?

A team is the power that drives a project. They take on jobs with skill and experience, completing them according to their plan—on time and within budget. To do this requires thorough management and coordination.

This is easier said than done. The objectives to be met are to create communication channels, promote collaboration, and assess your team’s performance while running a large project.

After that, the paramount importance of team management is that it helps to bring your project to success. But other benefits may need to be clarified.

Team Composition

Teams are not static. You will probably use the same team for similar projects. The more understanding they have, the better they will do. A well-managed team means that, as you add new team members, they will have a lower learning curve and will be helped to get up to speed by more experienced members. As teams gain experience and expertise, they become more valuable assets.

 The first step in managing a team of project managers is to build a team with the right skills and expertise. This involves recruiting and selecting individuals with a strong project management background and complementary skills that align with the organization’s needs.

Teams work better when they work together. But not everyone on the team clicks immediately. You must foster a collaborative nature that bonds team members into an effective team. This means assembling the right team and giving each member responsibilities that match their skills. You can also try team-building activities to build a collaborative environment.

Diversity and Skills: A well-rounded team should ideally comprise individuals with diverse project management experiences, skills, and backgrounds. This diversity can bring a broader perspective to problem-solving and enhance the team’s overall capabilities.

Team Size: The team size can vary depending on the organization’s needs, but it’s essential to balance having enough project managers to handle the workload and ensuring the team is manageable enough to manage effectively.

Roles and Responsibilities:

Clearly defining the roles and responsibilities of each project manager is crucial. This includes assigning specific projects, outlining their decision-making authority, and clarifying their accountability for project success.

Like productivity, performance speaks to the more significant theme of helping organizations meet their goals and objectives. Team management builds strong teams that accomplish the larger organization’s goals while working on the smaller tasks of individual projects.

Project Allocations: Allocate projects to team members based on their strengths and areas of expertise. Ensure a fair workload distribution among the team to prevent burnout and ensure optimal resource utilization.

Alignment with Organizational Goals: Each project manager should clearly understand how their projects align with the organization’s strategic objectives. This alignment helps project managers make decisions in the organization’s best interest.


Maintain open lines of communication with the project managers through regular team meetings. These meetings provide a platform for discussing project updates challenges, and sharing best practices.

Reporting and Documentation: Implement a standardized reporting and documentation system to ensure that project managers can easily communicate the status of their projects, risks, and issues.

Escalation Protocols: Define clear escalation protocols for issues that require higher-level intervention. Project managers should know when and how to escalate problems beyond their authority.


As a manager of project managers, you set the tone for the team. Leading by example regarding work ethic, professionalism, and commitment to quality project management practices can inspire your team.

Empowerment: Empower your project managers by giving them autonomy to make decisions within their designated authority. This fosters a sense of ownership and responsibility for their projects.

Mentorship: Provide mentorship and coaching to help your project managers grow in their roles. Sharing your knowledge and experience can help them develop their skills and confidence.

Performance Evaluation

 Establish key performance indicators (KPIs) and metrics to measure the performance of each project manager and the team. This might include project completion time, budget adherence, and client satisfaction.

Project managers may have various responsibilities in different organizations. When you bring together a team of people from different backgrounds, they will have different scope expectations.

For example, one project manager may assume that creating a test plan is the responsibility of the functional specialist. In contrast, another PM may think it is the project manager’s responsibility. You should clearly define roles and responsibilities to ensure everyone is on the same page.

Regular Reviews: Conduct regular performance reviews to provide feedback on each project manager’s performance, identify areas for improvement, and set goals for future development.

Recognition and Rewards: Recognize and reward outstanding performance. This can be through bonuses, promotions, or even public acknowledgment of a well-done job.

Mediation: Project managers may encounter conflicts with team members or external stakeholders. As the manager of project managers, you may need to mediate and resolve disputes to ensure that projects continue smoothly.

Conflict Prevention: Implement clear communication and well-defined project scopes to minimize conflicts.

Fostering Knowledge Sharing: Regarding project management teams, more is needed to encourage communication – you must have processes and methods for sharing information across the group. Create a central database or hub to share new developments, unexpected issues, or lessons learned to access others as needed.

For example, suppose a project manager encounters an unexpected problem on a current project. In that case, they can check the system to see if anyone has experienced a similar situation and discover how it was resolved.

Resource Management

Manage resources effectively by ensuring each project manager has the personnel, tools, and budget to execute their projects successfully.

Resource Forecasting: Anticipate and allocate resource needs efficiently to avoid bottlenecks and delays.

Risk Assessment: Work with project managers to identify potential risks and develop mitigation strategies. This contains monitoring risks throughout the project lifecycle.

Contingency Planning: Develop contingency plans to address unforeseen challenges and keep projects on track.

Learning and Development: Encourage continuous learning and development among your team of project managers. Support their participation in relevant training programs and industry certifications.

Process Improvement: Regularly assess project management processes and look for opportunities to streamline and improve them. This can lead to improved efficiency and better project development.

Technology and Tools

Project Management Software: Provide your team with software and tools to enhance collaboration, tracking, and reporting. Ensure that everyone is trained on how to use these tools effectively.

Stay informed about emerging trends and advancements in project management technology. Implement tools and strategies that can improve your team’s performance.

Agile Methodologies: Consider adopting agile project management methodologies to enhance adaptability, collaboration, and client satisfaction.

Documentation: Emphasize the importance of thorough project documentation. Well-documented projects are easier to manage, transfer, and evaluate.

Lessons Learned: Encourage project managers to document and share lessons learned from each project. This promotes continuous improvement and knowledge sharing within the team.

Client Relationship Management: Develop strong client relationships and ensure project managers prioritize client needs and expectations.

Ethical Considerations: Emphasize ethical considerations in project management, including transparency, honesty, and integrity in dealing with clients and stakeholders.

Conclusion: Managing a team of project managers

In conclusion, managing a team of project managers is a multifaceted role requiring leadership, project management expertise, and effective communication. To succeed, you must focus on team composition, clearly defined roles, open communication, leadership, performance evaluation, conflict resolution, resource management, risk management, continuous improvement, and best practices.

By implementing these strategies and principles, you can guide your team of project managers toward successful project outcomes and contribute to achieving your organization’s strategic goals. While we can appreciate that different project managers have different ways of working, this can present stakeholder challenges.

If each project manager handles their schedules differently, meeting minutes and reports will be inconsistent, causing confusion and frustration throughout the organization. You may also discover a situation where executives prefer how a PM does things and unwittingly burden them with projects. Suddenly, they’re swamped with much work while your other project managers sit idle.

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