Project management is a burgeoning field that offers the promise of high earnings and plenty of room for advancement. There are numerous certifications and skills that can set you apart from the crowd, and advancing your project management career is a matter of simply choosing which best suits your life. Consider the ways you can catapult your career and make the most of your role as project manager with these strategies.
Put in the Time
You can have the right education, degree, and every certification under the sun, but if you don’t have the practical experience, you’ll find yourself at a stalemate. It’s important to put in the time and effort in whatever industry you’re hoping to advance in. Whether that means taking a lower paying job, participating in a project management internship, or asking your company if you can move laterally to another department or sector of the business, it’s important to consider the ways in which you can gather first-hand experience.
There’s multiple certifications available to project managers, and any one of these can make a significant impact in your career. Whether you choose to pursue your PMP, PgMP, or PRINCE2, you’ll find that standard credentials serve you well when looking for employment opportunities and negotiating salary. These credentials can help you prove to prospective employers your capabilities and breadth of knowledge. Choose your certification by your experience level, and consider what might be most applicable in your industry. Some employers are willing to help cover the costs of certification; whether that means paying for your PMP courses or handling the fee for sitting for the exam, consider asking your supervisors and determine whether your company is willing to invest in your future.
Be Vocal About Aspirations
It’s important to remain vocal about your career advancement, and ensure your colleagues and superiors alike understand your desired career path. Letting your supervisor in on your plans can help you work to determine ways you can accomplish your goals. It’s also important that you position yourself for promotion; if a manager or supervisor knows you’re looking to advance, they may be quicker to bring up your name to the powers that be when a position opens.
As a project manager, you have to be prepared to handle the heavy weight of responsibility, and handle it well. You’ll serve as the resource for everything, be expected to have the answers for all questions. Unfortunately, every project faces obstacles and setbacks. Don’t fall into blame culture; keep your head up, accept responsibility, and focus your energies into determining a solution for whatever challenges come up during the process. An employer will be more inclined to promote a project manager that takes on the hard tasks, doesn’t complain, and is a proven problem solver.
Improve Your Communication Skills
As a project manager, you’ll be interacting with individuals from a multitude of departments and disciplines, and as such, you’ll need to have exemplary communication skills and tactics. It’s important to understand that the conception, development, and completion of any project requires an army, and you want to be sure the entire team has the resources they need to complete it. Be sure that you can cater your communication style to a variety of personality types, and make an effort to form strong bonds with your team. If you need help developing your public speaking, consider joining a local organization like Toastmasters.
Project management serves as a promising career path that can serve you well. If you’re looking for ways to make more money, advance further, and partake in a fulfilling career, consider these strategies and make a difference in your professional endeavors.