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Project management skills of the future

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The goal of this research study was to identify the competencies the Project Manager (PM) will need to respond to the challenges the construction industry faces in 2022 and beyond. The study revealed twenty-one emerging challenges for construction PMs grouped

The goal of this research study was to identify the competencies the Project Manager (PM) will need to respond to the challenges the construction industry faces in 2022 and beyond. The study revealed twenty-one emerging challenges for construction PMs grouped into four primary disruptive forces: workforce demographics, globalization, rapidly evolving technology, and changing organizational structures. The future PM will respond to these emerging challenges using a combination of fourteen competencies. The competencies are grouped into four categories: technical (multi-disciplined, practical understanding of technology), management (keen business insight, understanding of project management, knowledge network building, continuous risk monitoring), cognitive (complex decisions making, emotional maturity, effective communication), and leadership (leveraging diverse thinking, building relationships, engaging others, mentoring, building trust). Popular data collection methods used in project management research, such as surveys and interviews, have received criticism about the differences between stated responses to questions, what respondents say they will do, and revealed preferences, what they actually practice in the workplace. Rather than relying on surveys, this research study utilized information generated from games and exercises bundled into one-day training seminars conducted by Construction Industry Institute (CII) companies for current and upcoming generations of PMs. Educational games and exercises provide participants with the opportunity to apply classroom learning and workplace experience to resolve issues presented in real-world scenarios, providing responses that are more closely aligned with the actual decisions and activities occurring on projects. The future competencies were identified by combining results of the literature review with information from the games and exercises through an iterative cycle of data mining, analysis, and consolidation review sessions with CII members. This competency forecast will be used as a basis for company recruiting and to create tools for professional development programs and project management education at the university level. In addition to the competency forecast, the research identified simulation games and exercises as components of a project management development program in a classroom setting. An instrument that links the emerging challenges with the fourteen competencies and learning tools that facilitate the mastering of these competencies has also been developed.

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2012