Find out the top 10 core skills you need to master as a program director and what hard skills you need to know to succeed in this job.

A program director ensures the success of a program while maintaining the business value. Therefore, he/she acts as the pivotal point between the program manager and the business and also takes care of the interests of the clients by ensuring effective communication and collaboration between the parties.

Other specific responsibilities include making sure that the program produces the expected outcomes and that all the objectives are met within the set time and budget constraints. They utilize their knowledge about the business and the program to make decisions and sees to it that the program is being managed effectively. They are also responsible for briefing the client about the program from planning to its implementation, and they obtain the necessary resources from the client organization.

Core Skills Required to be a Program Director

Core skills describe a set of non-technical abilities, knowledge, and understanding that form the basis for successful participation in the workplace. Core skills enable employees to efficiently and professionally navigate the world of work and interact with others, as well as adapt and think critically to solve problems.

Core skills are often tagged onto job descriptions to find or attract employees with specific essential core values that enable the company to remain competitive, build relationships, and improve productivity.

A program director should master the following 10 core skills to fulfill her job properly.

Interviewing:

Interviewing is an essential skill in making a sound hiring decision that seeks to find out the candidate's background, work experience, skill level, general overall intelligence, enthusiasm, attitudes, etc.

A Program Director ought to be equipped with the right techniques to handle interviews whether they are face to face or telephone as they can be grueling and intimidating to the candidate; clarity and calmness of tone and the atmosphere are ideal.

Leadership Skills:

Leadership Skills are soft skills that assist leaders in positively interacting with employees or team members to make the workplace a great place.

A Program Director must be able to lead effectively by learning how to deal with all types of people in a way that motivates, enthuse and build respect in a bid to understand and develop his leadership skills.

Assertiveness:

Assertiveness is the inclination to stand up for your rights or other people's rights in a calm and concrete way without being aggressive or accepting a wrong.

A Program Director must be self-assured and confident to master the skills to put his points across without upsetting others or becoming angry and allowing the employees to do the same while complying with the company's policies and procedures.

Attention to Detail:

Attention to Detail is the capacity to achieve a thoroughness and accuracy when accomplishing a task.

A Program Director needs to have this prime characteristic and utilize it in a high performing organization that allows both the customers and staff to understand the need to be keen to all the details required to avoid massive costs for overlooked details that are common in the workplace.

Commitment to the Job:

Commitment to the Job is the feeling of responsibility that a person has towards a mission and goals of an organization.

A Program Director should be diligent in helping the employees connect and commit to their job by creating proper communication channels that make the employees feel listened to and encouraged to provide feedback thus creating mutual trust and respect in the workplace.

Evaluating Others:

Evaluating others is the capacity to see the individuality in others and recognize a person's unique point of view.

A Program Director must master the skills of evaluating others to help his staff members to identify their talents and match those talents to the proper job without trying to judge them by their actions that can create a misinterpretation of who they are.

Persuading Others:

Persuading others is making sure your best ideas get a fair hearing without manipulating others or using trickery.

A Program Director needs to creatively learn how to introduce new ideas that will boost growth for the company without managing the staff or put them under pressure with more work but with manageable goals that the employees will delight working on and grow as they do.

Practical Thinking:

Practical Thinking is the skill to think creatively about projects or work that requires your full attention to be completed and to bring great results.

A Program Director must ensure the decisions he makes are well sought after using professional characteristics for employees with high-level responsibilities to feel included and to allow growth for everyone in a constantly changing world that requires creativity.

Goal and Objective Setting:

Goal and Objective Setting is the strategic plan that is set and laid down identifying how goals should be accomplished, by who and by what time.

A Program Director must detect and schedule each employee's goals, strategy, and objectives and keep motivating them to ensure all of them are met within the set time bringing growth to both the company and the employee.

Project Management:

Project Management is structuring a to-do list for your project or company containing tasks and responsibilities as well as creating a roadmap for the execution of those duties promptly.

A Program Director must place emphasis on the application of the project management methodologies and principles by the staff in the daily functions and responsibilities to foster efficiently as well as create a competitive advantage in the heavily competitive business space.

Hard Skills Required to be a Program Director

Hard skills are job-specific skill sets, or expertise, that are teachable and whose presence can be tested through exams. While core skills are more difficult to quantify and less tangible, hard skills are quantifiable and more defined.

Hard skills are usually listed on an applicant's resume to help recruiters know the applicant's qualifications for the applied position. A recruiter, therefore, needs to review the applicant's resume and education to find out if he/she has the knowledge necessary to get the job done.

A program director should have a good command of the following hard skills to succeed in her job.

Program Director: Hard skills list

Active Listening Techniques
Administration and Management
Analyzing aerial, satellite, and radar imagery
Computer
Analyzing Data or Information
Behavior Modification Techniques
Case Management
Clerical
Communicate with children and adults
Community and Social Service Specialists
Computers
Conduct Investigations and Research
Confidentiality procedures
Cultural and Religious Awareness
Current Social Research
Counseling Techniques
Databases
Documenting/Recording Information
Emergency Management Principles
Enterprising
Foreign Language
Grammar, punctuation and spelling
Group psychology principles
Home Safety Hazards
Interpret Psychological Test Results
Interviewing Techniques
Institutional Care Procedures
Intervention Techniques
Labor Market Information
Law and Government
Lead recreational activities
Mediation Techniques
Microsoft Word
Operating weapons targeting, firing, and launch computer systems
Oral Communication
Presentations
Principles of Group Dynamics
Promoting Stability
Psychology
Psychology Theory
Public Safety and Security
Recognize physical and emotional abuse
Schedule Appointments
Social Service
Social Trend Awareness
Sociology and Anthropology
Sociology Theory
Systems Analysis
Systems Evaluation
Therapy and Counseling
Teaching Techniques
Technology
Understand needs of the elderly
Understanding of issues faced by families living in poverty
Written Communication

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