Friday, April 29, 2011

How do you continue to grow as a Project Manager?

So you are a PM and have been for years right?  You have your PMP certification and you are always on the lookout for PDUs, right?  Then maybe you obtained a Six Sigma certification or some other certifications …  now what is next?!?

If you find yourself in this rut here are my tips:

Start up a PM Knowledge Book.  It can be a binder or an electronic means to capture information.  Save interesting articles, links, how to’s or even fun games you have tried out in some of your classes you have attended.  Another possible way to do this is start a blog.  I cannot tell you how many times I’ve gone back to my blog to review something I wrote up after someone asks me a question on a certain aspect of project management (all of those links to other good pieces of information are also very helpful).

Get more training.  Look for different classes in things like communication, finance, business and taking a refresher course in Microsoft Project every couple of years cannot hurt!

Read blogs, books, magazines, listen to podcasts, and try out new trial versions of PM management tools.  This will help you to keep up on the ongoing trends in project management. But when will you have time to do this?  Schedule time for yourself and pick a couple of  blogs or podcasts to review every week.  After you do it for awhile you will start to get use to your new routine.  And you may surprise yourself as your thoughts flow out into the comments of blogs you’re reading (see you are now really getting involved).

Network with other PMs, ask them how they manage their projects. You can learn a lot of things from seasoned PMs.

Review profiles of PMs on linkedin and see if you can find new ways to build your profile (or resume), or you may find out about classes others have taken or purpose a question to the community for feedback.

Finally, give back. Whether it is mentoring a PM, working with your local PMI chapter, or donating your time to manage a community project.  Once you get to this stage that PM Knowledge Book you have been keeping will really pay off!

Notable quote:

An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.
-Benjamin Franklin 

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