Overview: Your start to a career as a project manager
It wouldn’t be wrong to name project managers as the backbone of companies. They make endless efforts for projects to finish in the best possible forms.
To become a project manager, you need to work on your professional and personal skills to handle these massive responsibilities without burnout and stress.
Here you will find everything you need to know to start your career as a project manager.
Degree or certificate?
The first could be to pursue a degree programme in which there is interest, e.g. business administration, mechanical engineering, digital business. Since there is no standardised path, there are many newcomers in this field who may have only attended individual seminars or lectures on project management in their studies. But there are also master's degree programmes in project management that would represent an opportunity for further education.
However, if there is no possibility or interest of studying, certifications can also be acquired while working. Various levels of certification are available for this, regardless of whether you are just starting out in your career or have been working for a long time and simply want to continue your education in the direction of project management. After all, you always start small and work your way up, because especially as a young professional, you are only given responsibility over time.
How to excel in your career as a new project manager?
Soft Skills, also known as social skills, help when dealing with people in the working world. Some people find it easier to acquire soft skills than others, but you can work on these skills. If you are pursuing a dream, then working on these skills is just another challenge on the way to achieving your dream. Soft skills you need to learn include conflict management, effective communication, time management, negotiation, decision making and leadership. Emotional intelligence is also useful. The list may seem long, but all of these skills are interrelated. They can all be mastered if you put in some hard work and time.
Hard Skills help to meet the technical requirements of being a project manager. Sound knowledge of project budgeting, scheduling, project documentation, work breakdown structure, risk management, earned value reports, etc. should be built in. Of course, this knowledge does not come from anywhere, but has to be learned. Perhaps you have already acquired some knowledge from your studies or from technical literature you read in your spare time? You can also attend courses, study on your own and simply get better and better during the project work - keyword: learning by doing.
Nothing can help you understand complex concepts and gain practical experience in project management better than mentoring from a reliable and experienced mentor. Many institutes offer you to learn from senior and well-experienced project managers and get practical knowledge about this field. Moreover, they can help you with advice on how to get out of a certain situation and will give you the much need-motivation to empower you.
How to get a Job as a Project Manager?
The main focus should be on improving your CV in line with a career as a project manager. Your own qualifications that match the requirements of the job should be highlighted. Action verbs should be used to describe previous work experience. Even if only entry-level jobs are initially offered, this strengthens the CV.