The power of emotionally intelligent project managers in the age of AI

Aug 4, 2023

I have a confession to make. I was tempted to take a shortcut and let AI do the heavy lifting for this blog. With the monthly deadline looming, I thought it would be a clever move to enlist the help of algorithms. However, what I quickly discovered is that while AI can deliver the basic structure, it falls short when it comes to capturing the emotional connection and interpretation that I was looking for. Sure, this blog may not be a Pulitzer Prize piece, but you get the idea.

This experience got me thinking about the realm of AI in project management, where Gartner’s research indicates that AI is making strides in transforming the landscape, predicting that by 2030, 80% of project management tasks will be run by AI. 

While AI undoubtedly offers immense time saving benefits, it can never replace the indispensability of good project managers. In fact, it is precisely in this age of AI that individuals with strong interpersonal skills will rise to the top.

EQ trumps IQ in the age of AI

Showing control and confidence when faced with challenges are crucial skills displayed by a PM with high EQ. They can demonstrate how to calmly diffuse emotions with facts, ensuring all stakeholders are aligned on the common project goal. And when you watch a team led by someone like this – they tend to reflect the PM’s approach to pressure. The positive bearing this can have on a project is hard to overstate.

This distinctive mix of interpersonal skills and leadership style makes the PM stand poised to harness the full potential of AI while preserving that crucial human connection that propels project success.

Therefore, AI’s integration into IT project management has become a boon for emotionally intelligent project managers. Building trust and fostering collaboration are second nature to an EQ project manager. By blending the analytical capabilities of AI with their exceptional communication skills, this enables them to nurture deeper connections with stakeholders, and unlock the true potential of their teams. 

Embrace the AI revolution

AI will give project managers the ability to save time. Automation of repetitive processes like progress tracking and risk analysis will provide real-time information sharing, document collaboration and effortless communication. An EQ project manager will embrace these invaluable insights to make data-driven decisions, and formulate strategies that align with both project objectives and the emotional needs of the team. 

An EQ project manager who can leverage this technology to communicate consistently and timely to all stakeholders, will be a critical differentiator when challenges are faced and tough decisions need to be made. 

These skills are particularly valuable in coaching and training project teams to embrace the benefits of AI tools, and navigate any new complexities that are required to integrate into existing processes.

People make projects successful, not methodologies

The human touch remains at the core of project success and the significance of emotionally intelligent project managers cannot be underestimated. PMs will play a pivotal role in the transition of using AI tools, bridging the gap between cutting-edge technology and human collaboration, thus paving the way for extraordinary outcomes. 

At Luminate we’ll continue to embrace AI, as we can only see the benefits of tools like this and it frees up more time to focus on the top 20% of what really drives project success.