Experience in Project Management – How To Get It

Filed under Career | Posted by PMStudent

Steve Tkalcevich is a member of the Lakeshore, Ontario chapter of PMI in Canada.

His chapter partnered with another community organization to do something great.

He gained some great experience, and is continuing to volunteer. In an email exchange I recently had with Steve, he said:

I am now volunteering with a local art gallery on an event and fundraiser project as a project manager.

It’s a great way to give back to your community, build relationships with people you are working alongside and demonstrate your skills, and create some great stories to talk about during interviews:

The PMI project was the most fulfilling project I did and it is the one I am post proud of. In job interviews I always talk about it even though I work in IT Infrastructure or Web development.

I asked Steve to provide some examples of other benefits he’s received by volunteering for project work in this way. ?There are many more benefits than simply gaining experience in project management:

  • A sense of belonging in the community when there was no real connection before.
  • Find a passion that was not there before
  • May change the way you manage members in your team and your emotional intelligence.
  • When your volunteering you see first-hand of the challenges people face depending on the cause and this may change your future decisions based on what you experienced.
  • It brings along a sense of responsibility that was not there before.

Question: What’s Holding You Back?

If you don’t have experience managing projects yet, what’s holding you back? ?Assuming you have an interest in project management as a career and it’s important to you, what’s in your way?

Answer: Nothing And No One But Yourself

Go make these opportunities happen.

Saying “I asked if they needed volunteers and they said no.” is not good enough. Create the opportunities.

Propose a project, garner support and buy-in, and go do it. In a non-profit organization, in your company, at your school, whatever.

Opportunities do not fall into your lap. ?You can’t wait for them to come to you.

Just do it.

P.S. My thanks to Steve and his team for being an inspiration to us all! ?And congratulations on winning the?2010 Community Advancement Award from PMI!