Home >

Select A Project Team With A Balanced Mix Of Attributes

Sometimes you will be told who the members of your project team are going to be. That is generally unfortunate. It is much better if you can get your project sponsor to agree to you identifying and then inviting people of your choice to serve. If you are held accountable for a successful project outcome it seems reasonable that you should decide whom you want to help you to produce the results. If you are fortunate enough to make your own selection there are two things to bear in mind. It makes sense to have a mixture of people with the technical and commercial skills needed for the project. That is obvious enough. However, it is also helpful to have a group of individuals who make different contributions in terms of their temperaments. The concept of team roles, formulated by Dr Meredith Belbin (1981), was explored in Getting The Right People Into The Jobs  on selection. It is also helpful in project work. For example, some people are good at producing ideas. Others are good analysts. They ask questions and test understanding. Some people excel at taking on ideas and turning them into action. Some people are good at keeping the rest of the team on its toes. They remind people about deadlines and worry that all items on the agenda are covered properly. There are others who are good at mediating when conflicts arise and who excel at pouring oil on troubled waters. There are those who are good at representing the team with stakeholders and outsiders. There are yet others who provide energy and drive and help to keep up a high level of motivation among team members generally. So if you have the opportunity to identify a mixture of people to invite into the project team, try to achieve a balance of technical and commercial skills on the one hand and a mixture of creative, analytical, problem-solving, checking, caring, doing and shaping attributes on the other.