Broadcast media, like many other parts of the media as a whole, is a vast machine with many different components all working together. Across the range of different departments, there are people that play a pivotal role in making sure targets are met and budgets managed – and they are project managers.
Having a consistent approach to project management
Unsurprisingly, having a strong and consistent approach to project management is essential for broadcast media. With so many stages of development and creation, the exorbitant cost of production and the many unknowns involved, media products can often spiral in cost and time. So, a broadcast project manager needs the industry experience, knowledge, and unparalleled organisational skills in order to keep things on track – and under budget.
With so many different departments and hierarchies, a project manager is going to have to communicate with a large number of people – all doing different roles and at different levels of seniority. So, naturally, this is one skill that a project manager absolutely must have. If you are someone who loves to talk to people, then this part of the job might even be fun.
A head for figures and budgets
The media is a famously costly business, and this fact means that a broadcasting project manager needs to have a level of financial wizardry in order to stop costs piling up. Television networks, for example, have limited budgets and a large number of time slots to fill with content, so what gets spent where and how much is critical. A project manager won’t be able to choose how much funding they get, but it’s up to them to make the money work for them, making skilful budgeting and a knack for troubleshooting financial issues essential abilities for the role.
Rallying the troops behind you
Much like all management roles across different industries, establishing and maintaining a rapport with the people you are managing is essential. The role is more than just media-based accountancy, and a project manager has to be able to coordinate their various teams to make sure everyone is doing what they should be. With such large amounts of people involved in production, post-production, broadcast engineering etc, being able to establish these strong working relationships that help drive and motivate team members is arguably more important for broadcast media than other industry sectors.
These key skills might be similar for other industries, but they are most certainly essential for being a project manager in broadcast media.