Project management is not only a popular career choice but also a profession that is in high demand. If you’re interested in a career in project management, there are a few things you can do to get started. Here are 10 ways to kick-start a career in project management.
10 ways to kick-start a career in project management
There are a number of different project management certifications available, and each has its own set of requirements. However, generally speaking, most project management certification programs require candidates to have a certain amount of experience in the field, as well as pass an exam.
There are multiple project management certifications and designations out there, and they all have different time and on-the-job experience requirements. Make sure you have the time and energy to dedicate yourself to whichever you end up choosing.
Specialize in a particular area
While certifications and experience are important, another way to make yourself more attractive to potential employers is to specialize in a particular area of project management. This could mean anything from becoming an expert in Agile methodology to focusing on change management or risk management.
If you want to know what the industry is currently looking for and, therefore what areas are in high demand, you can check out job postings for project manager positions. This will give you a good idea of the kinds of skills and experience employers are looking for.
Get involved in a professional organization
One way to network and learn more about the field of project management is to get involved in a professional organization, such as the Project Management Institute (PMI). These organizations offer a variety of resources and networking opportunities that can be beneficial for those looking to start or further their career in project management.
You can also consider joining social media and Slack groups that are geared towards PM professionals. This can be a great way to connect with others in the field, learn about new trends and developments, and get your questions answered by more experienced professionals.
Find a mentor
Another way to learn more about the field and get some good advice is to find a mentor. This could be someone you know who works in project management or even someone you meet through a professional organization. Having a mentor can be helpful in terms of getting guidance and feedback on your career goals and progress.
Read industry publications
To stay up-to-date on the latest trends and developments in project management, be sure to read industry publications. This could include trade magazines, online blogs, and even white papers from leading companies in the field. Reading these materials can help you learn about new methods and approaches, as well as keep up with the latest news in the industry.
Attend conferences and seminars
Another great way to learn more about project management is to attend conferences and seminars. These events typically feature presentations from experts in the field, as well as provide opportunities for networking and job-seeking. Attendance at these events can also help you stay up-to-date on industry trends.
Pursue higher education
Although it is not required, pursuing higher education can certainly help you further your career in project management. There are a number of different degree programs available, ranging from associate’s degrees to PhDs. In addition to formal education, there are also a number of professional development courses offered by many colleges and universities.
If you find yourself languishing in your current job or struggling to get your foot in the door of project management, consider taking some or all of these steps to jumpstart your career. With dedication and hard work, you can position yourself for success in this growing field.
Take on freelance work
In addition to traditional full-time employment, another option for those looking to get started in project management is to take on freelance work. This can be a great way to get some experience under your belt and build up your portfolio. Plus, it can also help you make some important contacts in the industry.
This is good advice regardless of the industry, especially ones that are difficult to break into and don’t want to take a chance (or spend money training) newcomers.
Get a job in a related field
If you’re having trouble finding a job specifically in project management, another option is to look for jobs in related fields. This could include positions in project coordination, program management, or even product management. While these jobs may not be directly related to project management, they can still give you valuable experience that can be helpful in your career.
Once you’ve gained some valuable skills in an adjacent or related field, you can think about using them to transition into project management. Spend some time analyzing your experience and determining how it could be applied in project management and tailor your resume accordingly.
Start your own business
Finally, another option for those looking to get started in project management is to start their own business. This could involve providing consulting services to clients or even developing and selling software products. While this option may not be right for everyone, it can be a great way to get started in the field and build up your experience.
These are just a few of the many ways you can get started in project management. By taking some time to explore your options and develop a plan, you can be well on your way to a successful career in this growing field.