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Why a Project Manager?

Article by Emily Carr   October 19, 2007
Filed Under: Tools and Resourcescollaborationnew business developmentstudio management
As a design professional active in many industry circles, I meet a lot of people, and most of them assume I'm a designer. When they ask what kind of work I do, I say, “Actually, I'm a project manager for a design firm.” That's when I get the blank stare, furrowed brow, discouraging grimace or some combination of the three.
“So you're an account person,” they say.
“Well, kind of, but not exactly,” I reply.
“Are you a production manager?”
“No, I'm really not that good at production. But I help keep track of deadlines and schedules.”
“So do you use Gantt charts and Microsoft Project?”
“Sometimes, but it's a necessary evil and not really my favorite part of the job.”
“Well, then, what do you do?”

It's a tough question to answer. Especially because in many design firms the project manager is still an emerging position. I have work…