Was pointed to this post on PM Hut from Raven’s Brain on project management skills and competences. The emphasis on the ‘softer’ people management skills:

be a leader and a manager

be a team builder and a team leader

be a negotiator and an influencer

be an excellent communicator

alongside other skills you’d expect in terms of planning, be a problem solver, be organised and be a competent planner. The need for excellence in communication but only a “competent” planner chimes with my experience – plans change in the act of implementation but changes are only really effective if they’re clearly communicated. Its should als be noted that excellent communication should also include excellent listening. Listening tends to be an overlooked managerial requirement, communication is too often understood as explaining rather than as the proper back and forth of dialogue. Dialogue is critical to better preparation to the ebb and flow of the complexities of real organisational life – for more discussion on dialogue and related issues, have a look at Cognitive Edge, Dialogos and Anecdote for example.