PMI’s Talent Triangle highlights the qualities of a good project manager. The ideal project manager has a combination of technical project management skills, leadership and strategic and business management.

PMI Talent Triangle

If you thought technical skills was all you needed as a project manager, think again.

In today’s job market, companies are increasingly looking for project managers who can not only execute, but also strategize. Most project managers focus on short-term execution. However, if you are a project manager who can strategize, you can help your company plan long term goals.

Let’s take a look at each of these three components of the PMI Talent Triangle and what they mean:


Technical Project Management

Technical project management refers to your competence in the 10 Knowledge Areas and 5 Process Groups of the PMBOK®. You need to be familiar with what they are and when to use them on your project. 

(In case you are taking your PMP® exam, here’s an article showing you a 6 quick ways to memorize the 10 knowledge areas.)

In technical project management, your tasks include  tracking the limited resources assigned to the project, and allocating these resources appropriately to complete the project’s objectives.

You should not rely solely on technical project management because this type of management is, sometimes, unflatteringly referred to as “management by spreadsheet.”


Strategic and Business Management

In this section, you task as the project manager is to understand how your project fits within the larger strategic goals of your organization. Without a clear understanding, you may misinterpret the scope or misled your team.

When you do not have a clear idea of how your project fit within the strategic goals of the organization, the projects also have a higher rate of failure.

A great project manager is someone with a strong strategic vision, and can contribute new ideas to the organization. You will be paid more because you will add more to the organization’s bottom line.

Many organizations are already including project managers in their strategic meetings and asking for their feedback.

When the project manager’s feedback is taken into consideration, s/he will be more motivated to see the vision into fruition.



The project’s success depends on the people working on it. In this section, you, the project manager, understands that different team members have different personalities and needs. You will use your assessments to motivate your team to accomplish the project’s objectives.

You have strong leadership skills, and know when to give the appropriate rewards and punishments. You not only has a high IQ, but a high EQ as well.

Technical skills are at the core of being a good project manager. However, having strategic vision and leadership skills is what will give you a competitive edge in the job market. 

Organizations are realizing that pure technical management does not motivate and excite a team, which increases the risk of project failure.

You, the project manager, are the team’s first line of contact in the organization. If you do not know how the project fits in the company’s strategy, the team probably will not know either.

If the team does not understand what they are working towards, they will be less motivated to give their 100% to the project.

Currently, many organizations have a group for strategy and another one for implementation. Sometimes, there is miscommunications between the two groups.

To mitigate the risk of miscommunication, organizations are including project managers in their strategy sessions and asking for their feedback, instead of pushing ideas on them.

Thus, increasingly, there is an increased demand for project managers who are both a tactician and a strategist.

You will be paid more if you are a project manager who have a strategic vision for managing projects. If you have all the skills in the Talent Triangle, you will be more valuable and will likely help your company increase profitability.  

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