CELEBRATING WOMEN IN PROJECT MANAGEMENT 2020 SERIES
Location: Manila, Philippines
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Jas has run digital projects ranging from web & mobile development to interactive solutions to E-commerce to Data Science, AI and ML. Jas also trains teams on Agile Transformation. Jaspreet formerly co-founded an on-demand service startup. Jaspreet has also been featured in the PMI magazine twice. First for the Women Leaders in Project Management and secondly, for the Hiring Lessons for young professionals entering Project Management and holds a PMI Certification.
What is your project management super power?
Exceptional communication skills: It’s important to be able to communicate with everyone involved in the project from peers to team members and stakeholders. Everyone needs different information presented in different terms. This is a skill that is vital to a project leader’s success. Additionally, I would add the gift of foresight, being able to look down the road and make some reasonable predictions based upon practical assumptions is an important skill.
How can gender diversity be improved in the project management profession?
I think it has to be done from both ends. Employer side and the applicant side. The job descriptions need to be reassessed if they sound more masculine or feminine (appealing to one gender over another). Another way to do this is to be mindful of our unconscious bias, people may just not believe it happens at their company. But since it can exist everywhere, hiring managers should circulate resumes with names removed, so women are not discriminated against. And don’t ask candidates to explain multi-year gaps in their resumes, which are almost always due to family or illness. On the applicant side, women need to seek strong female role models and mentors that remind them these positions are attainable.
As the profession evolves, what skills do you think will be key for future success?
I think it would be stakeholder influence (which can be under People Skills). Every project involves people in some capacity. In project management terms, these people are called stakeholders. Your ability to unlearn, learn and adapt rapidly.
How do you recover from difficult situations?
Firstly, I let myself feel the guilt, or grief or whatever it be. It’s okay to feel sad for a bit and then, that’s it. The next step is to reflect the entire scenario on what happened and where could have things gone wrong what could I have done differently and coming up with my action plan and keep a record of my lessons learnt document pretty much like a sprint retrospective or project management. Life goes on, it’s important to forgive yourself.
What are your tips and techniques for conflict resolution?
1. Accepting Conflict – Conflict is a sign of a need for change and an opportunity for growth, new understanding, and improved communication. Conflict cannot be resolved unless it is addressed with the appropriate individuals
2. Be a calming agent. Regardless of whether you are being a sounding board for a friend or you are dealing with your own conflict, your response to the conflict can escalate or decrease the intensity of the problem. To be calming, provide an objective or neutral point of view. Help plan how you are going to work with the other party to achieve resolution
3. Agree to disagree. Each person has a unique point of view and rarely agrees on every detail. Being right is not what is important. When managing conflict, seeking the “truth” can trap you rather than set you free. For example, consider the differing testimony of witnesses that all see the same car accident. Truth is relative to the person’s point of view
4. Maintain confidentiality. Encourage others who are in conflict to deal directly with the person they are in conflict with. Avoiding the conflict and venting to others tends to escalate the conflict and fuels the rumor mill
Which 3 words best describe why you enjoy being a project manager?
Learn, lead, respect. (Wide range of projects across different industries – (You develop significant knowledge about any business and business processes, you lead teams to deliver incredible business outcomes, you’re constantly sharing knowledge with others – it inspires respect, people look up to you).
Hello amazing women of the project management world! My Celebrating Women in Project Management Series highlights your stories to inspire others, raise the profile of women in the project management profession, and to further strengthen our global network.
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