Nov 22 2023

What’s Your Superpower?

Project Leadership
2 minutes

You probably can’t shoot spiderwebs from your fingertips but you do possess uniquely human powers that allow you to excel at things AI developers can only dream of.

A year ago, ChatGPT was a new thing, barely out of its box, and I was developing, with my colleagues, a set of questions that we felt we needed answers to. These questions—what skills are most essential to deliver not just projects, but value? What percentage of project managers possess those skills? How do these skills impact the performance of the organization?—eventually became our 2023 research study, Project Management Skills for Value Delivery, and the topic of both a recent webinar and my PMI Global Summit presentation titled "Irreplaceable! Skills to AI-Proof Your Career."

Project ManagementThe study wasn’t designed to tell us how project managers should develop and learn in order to thrive in an AI-assisted workplace. But that’s exactly what the data revealed. The top skills of project managers in high-performing organizations in the study included things like acting with integrity and building trust, working collaboratively in teams, and communicating difficult information with sensitivity. The more I worked with the data, the more I realized that this study –and other information being developed by PMI—tells us that the way to succeed tomorrow, with or without AI, is to double down on your very human gifts of compassion, creativity, communication and cultural awareness. These skills, once termed “soft” are actually the bedrock of the art of project management. AI will excel at the science: crunching the data, finding anomalies, highlighting similarities. But your humanity will be your superpower—if you choose to develop it.

One chart from the study tells the story: looking at the organizational project management performance scores of low, medium and high performers shows how a focus on strategic leadership skills, business acumen, and new ways of working lifts the entire organization to new heights.

 Jeannette Cabanis-Brewin About the Author
Jeannette Cabanis-Brewin is Editor-in-Chief of PM Solutions Research, the content generation center of PM Solutions, Inc., a project management consulting and training firm based in Chadds Ford, PA. A frequent presenter on project management research topics, she is the author or editor of over 20 project management books, including two that have received the PMI Literature Award. In 2007, she received a Distinguished Contribution Award from PMI.

    See how you can prevent project
    failure with TrueProject

    Request a demo