Being a Project Manager - Part II

Being a Project Manager - Things You Should Know

Previous post 'Being a Project Manager -I' will help aspiring project manager in understanding the career choices involved, reasons to become a project manager, and how he/she can become one. This post briefs about how one can work on career path of becoming a project manager and understand typical expectations from a project manager.

Being a Project Manager - Project Management Career

Improving your chances of becoming a Project Manager

As I mentioned earlier, until recently organizations have been looking for candidates with previous project management, leadership experience for the role of Project Manager. Things are changing now. If a given candidate has work experience in a given domain, and if he has gone through Project Management Training, and/ or graduation in project management, and/ or certifications, companies are considering these candidate for project leader/ project manager position.

Those who have domain experience have done project management training, and are without project management experience, or those who have academic/university degree of project management, can look for internship, placement in project management related activities. They can also take up volunteer work or build upon their existing work-profile such that they can get project management experience; it will help you in improving your chances for applying project management position and becoming a project manager. You can also talk to project managers, program managers, and portfolio managers in your organization. You should hear their experience, expectations; look for their guidance about career move as a project manager.

Of course, it is needless to say that when you will apply for project manager or related positions, you will have to build and present your resume in such a way that it will reflect your academics, work experience, training, certification, volunteer work in project management like PM-Volunteer or search charity jobs. Your excellence in all of these aspects, coupled with your desire to live the project management role should be highlighted in your cv (sample of project managerís cv).


Being a Project Manager

Letís see what all does it imply being a project manager : personality traits, skillset required to fulfill the expectation of this role.

  • Have ability to plan well, have realistic schedule, with a focus on details of delivery
  • Good understanding of organization culture, using knowledge of the same in positive force
  • Good communicator
  • Good negotiator and Influencer
  • A good team leader, drives team to deliver their best for project and takes everyone along through the journey
  • Be able to work under pressure with varied expectations, yet be effective in time management
  • Manage cases of conflicts and resolve amicably

Typical Job Profile of a Project Manager

Being a Project Manager - Improve Your Chances to Become a PM

If we speak of job profile of project manager, in a broader sense following things are expected from him/her

  • Plan project in terms of schedule (timeline), cost, quality and resources
  • Identify right resources (skill set, availability) and delegate work appropriately
  • Regularly track project progress, assist and guide project team
  • Present project progress to project sponsors, customer and senior manager

One role, different (and unending expectations)

One aspect to be noted here is, this are generalized expectation from project manager. Depending on your industry, organization and size of the project there will can various different consideration, trade-off that project managers need to do e.g. the project manager in Information Technology can have deeper technical involvement than that of project manager for creative design project.

It is needless to say that for a project manager, every day, every minute surprises can be waiting for him. A transition of being just a project manager to the great project manager is quite a journey and it needs careful understanding of every project situation now & in future, getting things done from team such that their aspirations are nurtured in line with meeting projectís (& in turn organizationís) objectives, skillfully communicating and setting clear expectations among stakeholders, if required taking support & guidance from senior management to get around difficult situation and save them from unpleasant surprises.

Post by Dhan Wagholikar

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Project Management Software by Zilicus

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