Today I want to recognize an important and often undervalued position – Project Manager.
A company like Continental has many entrepreneurs, we call them project managers. They are the backbone of every project. It is probably one of the toughest jobs you can go into while there aren’t many other positions that offer a comparable learning and growth opportunity.
The project managers are often handed a challenging mission. They are the ones to keep projects on track and ensure a recovery plan is in place when things don’t go as planned. Hence I felt it is important to highlight how critical this position is to many companies and to me. I want to thank each and every project manager we have for their contributions. Not only does a project manager lead a multi-disciplined team, often they are our future leadership. At Continental we recognize the importance of the position by establishing a specific career path for project managers.
Timing is critical, scope and design changes, lack of resources, and many other challenges the project managers have to deal with every day. They make a plan, knowing that they will have to react and be ready for the unexpected.
The beauty of being a project manager is that you essentially run your own business in a large business setting. You are interacting with all functions and disciplines within the company as well as with suppliers and customers. You are often responsible for the profitability of the product and in charge of the development budget.
The most rewarding moment of a project manager’s life is when you and your team successfully launch the product you developed and achieve customer satisfaction. Going to the show room at the dealership and seeing your component in a brand new vehicle for the first time is an amazing experience. If you’ve never experienced that, you’re missing out!
I’m thankful for being in a position where I get to witness project managers and their team successfully raising to the many challenges our industry offers!
We’ve had two most recent instrument cluster projects that were launched by our team. Both projects came with many challenges starting with an “impossible” timing. Thanks to the team’s dedication, creativity, flexibility, “Passion to Win, and “For one Another” spirit, they can now proudly look back at what they have accomplished. I also want to acknowledge the excellent cooperation with our customer and the trust they put into us.