All contract managers must understand various aspects of business. In order to make sound business decisions, contract managers’ skill sets should go beyond knowing the contract’s terms and conditions; they must also know about the marketplace in which their organization operates, including finance, economics, and accounting. They must be able to manage and lead a team and understand how to use technology to meet the organization’s goals.

Over 10 years ago, one noted professional, W. Gregor Macfarlan, predicted that “(t)he success of contracting professionals will be measured by their business management skills, not how many contracts are awarded or changes processed.” That prediction has come true. Today, a contract manager’s job is more strategic and team-oriented, requiring technical competency and acquisition skills to meet customer needs. Understanding and applying business skills are important steps toward providing valuable customer service to your organization.