09 Mar So You Want To Be A Project Manager?
Over the past decade I have talked to many a young #civilengineer who have a desire, after just a few years of experience, to jump into a Project Manager role. I always applaud that ambition, and many very well may have been capable, but there are no short-cuts to success and there is tremendous value in being patient and gaining the valuable experience as a design & project engineer required to be a Project Manager that stands out amongst the rest.
Project management is a challenging role that requires a variety of skills, including technical knowledge, leadership, and the ability to manage complex projects. While it may be tempting for young engineers to want to jump into a project management role, the truth is that gaining years of engineering and technical experience is important for building the foundation and skills needed to be a successful project manager.
One of the key values of gaining experience as an #engineer is that it allows you to understand the technical aspects of a project in greater depth. And with more experience at the technical level, the more challenges you will face…and overcome! This understanding is crucial when it comes to making decisions, identifying potential problems, and developing solutions. The many challenges you face as a design and project engineer FIRST will make you THAT MUCH MORE VALUABLE to your clients when you become a Project Manager.
Additionally, as an experienced engineer, you will be able to communicate more effectively with other members of the project team, including other engineers, architects, and contractors.
Another important aspect of experience is to understand how to manage people, resources and the project itself. You’ll learn how to manage multiple stakeholders and how to navigate the political aspects of projects. This experience will make you more effective in leading and directing a team of engineers and other professionals towards a common goal. Also you will have the ability to manage and mitigate risks, as well as understanding how to manage cost and schedule.
Finally, patience is a key virtue when it comes to building ANY career. It can be difficult to wait for the right opportunity to come along, but it’s important to remember that building a career takes time. By gaining experience and building a strong foundation, you will be better prepared for a project management role when the opportunity arises.