Voices on Project Management

> Back to Voices Home

Why I Like Being a Project Manager

| | Comments (40) | TrackBacks (0)
I have often been asked in the past about the benefits of working in project management.

Having worked for many businesses in various roles, I have learned that what I like most about project management is the variety of roles and the type of environments I am exposed to.

I was always drawn to the concept of managing, but didn't really want to stay with the same environment or be involved in long-term operational work.
 
Project management appeals to me because it allows me to:

- Manage teams
- Work with different teams on the new projects
- Work in different cultural environments
- Be exposed to various architectures, systems
- Manage my time and efforts against very specific deliverables
- Work in multiple departments or areas, thus being able to gain insight into the ways of managing projects by looking at different angles and listening to different points of view  

The project management cycle is so finite that it creates an opportunity to refine skills a lot faster. As a project manager moves from one stage to another, you get to know the components of project management delivery. Therefore, you have many opportunities to improve how you manage each of them, be it budgeting, generating the scope of work, generating a work breakdown structure or managing the risks.

The opportunity for lifelong learning in project management is also a benefit. While you get to do a complete job with the skills you have -- therefore covering all aspects of the project management -- you also get an opportunity to specialize in a particular area, such as risk management or schedule management.

What other benefits have you discovered?

 

Bookmark and Share

 

The views expressed within the PMI Voices on Project Management blog are contributed from external sources and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of PMI.

0 TrackBacks

Listed below are links to blogs that reference this entry: Why I Like Being a Project Manager.

TrackBack URL for this entry: http://blogs.pmi.org/mt-tb.cgi/333

Leave a comment

All comments are reviewed by our moderators, and will not appear on this blog unless they have been approved. Comments that do not relate directly to the blog entry's contents, are commercial in nature, contain objectionable or inappropriate material, or otherwise violate our User Agreement or Privacy Policy, will not be approved. For general inquiries not related to this blog, please contact Customer Service. Please read the Comments -- Question and Answers.

40 Comments

What I like about project management is that you will face different challenges based on the project type. This will increase the experience and knowledge.

I have IT experience but now want to change carrier to PM. Based on Positive points mentioned above i have intention to change from IT to PM. please kindly share your suggestions.

-- A project is a temporary endeavor, thus Project management is a profession that allows for constant change and many opportunities to learn new areas / get exposed to new industries.
-- Project management demands refinement of many different soft skills due to constant interaction with a variety of people.
-- Taking a project live gives a great sense of accomplishment.

I work for @task, a project management software company. I have question: Do you think social media tools would help project managers do their jobs better and as a result make work more enjoyable?

@task recently announced a new social project management platform called Stream that takes the concepts of social media and ties them into project management. You can see what I'm talking about at http://www.attask.com/stream.

What I really liked about the new platform was the idea of empowering your team members, recognizing accomplishments, and getting the real story. Any thoughts?

Editors’ note: on June 8, a few commenters’ names were lost due to human error. We deeply apologize.

I totally agree, but along with all the points mentioned by the writer, one more thing I feel is we get is the satisfaction of creating or achieving something.

Editors’ note: on June 8, a few commenters’ names were lost due to human error. We deeply apologize.

My discovery - It allows you to have the sense satisfaction of achieving or creating something.

I like being a PM because it helps

- to get exposure to different types of work environment, businesses and domains.
- gets me exposed to every day a new situation or problem to look into, which makes my work interesting and challenging.
- being a PM also helps you improve on your soft skills like people management and communication. I get to deal with different people from different backgrounds and get to understand how to handle and work with them.

Love the comments! I find that keeping the mind active is key to youthfulness. I love the challenges and scenarios that each project brings. Nothing is routine, as a PM I am always looking for new /improved/ or revisited methods to assist the team meet and exceed the goal!

I never thought that I would truly like a structured platform on which to work, but being a project manager has not only changed the way I do work, but the way I live my life.

Two benefits to me for being a project manager.

There are tons of professions in the world, but none are more suited to my personality type than project management. If you've ever taken the Myers-Briggs test (and I'm sure most of you have :) and been classified as ENTJ, then you know where I'm coming from. What other profession combines the love of: planning, strategy, leadership, problem solving, human interaction and the feeling of accomplishment? I truly go to work every day happy in the fact that I make a difference to myself, the client, and the industry I am in, because I am motivated to do so. Cheers everyone!

I like being a project manager because

I like working in different environments so that I am exposed to different system architecture.

Work with different teams & individuals so that you get to know people well.

I too agree with the comments made by different sets of people on the subject matter.

The best thing about being a project manager is the ability to predict the future. With our tools and questions we can find out what is likely to happen if we follow a specific plan, which then allows project sponsors to accept the plan, or re-plan.

I love the variety and the challenges that you face in managing each project. There are always lessons learned. I enjoy working with both the business users and the technical teams and being the project manager helps me enjoy the best and worst(!!) of both worlds.

Why I Like Being a Project Manager: Exploring my experience, and gaining more experience as we grow and want to grow.

Being a project manager is the most beautiful thing in my life; I am always willing to meet new people/team and like to work with them. Actually it not only gives me the chance to learn about these people, their culture and working style, but it gives me the chance to manage the variety of people and try to find out new ways rather than the contemporary methods of handling varied culture teams. I like to communicate with these persons as I am able to learn new things and improve upon my communication skills. Yes, it is in most of the cases required as different audiences have different attitude, culture and interpersonal abilities.

Sometimes persons have an urge to command, take a step ahead or some persons always need someone else to initiate communication; it is important to understand what people need from me or what they need me to be. Like if we are in a discussion related to understanding the requirements of a project and the main technical person who is actually the one who can explain it is either an introvert or having some communication problems. To tackle this situation we need to change the style of communication and make it more like asking things rather than believing that the person will explain everything by himself.

At the end of the day, in evening, I always summarize activities performed during the day and try to figure out what I learned, where I spend more time than required, where I spend less time than required, how many new persons I met, and what I liked in them. I always believe that every day we have some opportunity to learn new things, meet new people, understand new things. All this is a part of our day-to-day life, so for me, I am always satisfied at the end of the day because every day I learn new things.

Working with Virtual teams as a Project Manager has the distinct advantage of becoming a effective team leader. Being at different countries and places, the virtual team interaction will give firsthand knowledge to know about the culture, environment of that place and habits of people and their language.

Virtual team building helps in developing a common understanding within teams to share the cultural ethics. They guide the project manager to create conducive working environment, to build an effective team even though one to one personnel interaction is not available.

I like being a project manager for the following reasons:

1. Every project is different and with that so are the challenges.
2. Every project is a living, breathing challenge!
3. If you don't like challenges, don't be a project manager.
4. The most gratifying experience and respect that one can receive, is when a administration, person or peoples ask you, "Can you achieve their dream, pet project, goals?" That means, they believe in you!!!! - Michael A. Tucker, Project Manager, Evergreen, Colorado, USA

I like variety! Being a PM is like getting a new job with every new project.

Using the same principle guidelines of Project Management, the trajectory to meet the objective of a project is always unique to the project. The variances in situations and resources throw new challenges each time enriching the project manager's experience. And that is what I enjoy as a Project Manager.

Project Management gives you extensive exposure to varied roles across industries. It is not one of those mundane, monotonous, mechanical roles but prompts you to use your thinking skills for on-spot resolutions/ solutions and enables your risk taking capabilities to explore innovation to discover new avenues.

Project management is one of the best career options one could decide on!!!

These days, a lot of projects failed, which I observed is not because of the talent we have. It is because of the project methodologies we followed to make the project successful. So I have managerial thinking and good iterative skills. To understand the problem, prioritize the work based on importance, etc. Since I have above skills I thought that I can make myself a good project manager!!!!!

I really enjoy the interaction between project and engineering; project and other project managers; project and team members; project and the project client. It brings plenty of smiles...when the client changes its mind is just about when we want to hand over the project.

The project manager role in a construction sector is a challenging assignment. In these types of projects, one has to manage the work force, which requires immense interpersonal relationship and team building capabilities. Other challenges are more in handling the stakeholders’ expectations. Hence, I like to be a project manager to gain experience in handling such projects.

What i most appreciate about this profession is the learning that it has given me when it comes to managing people. Dealing with people has opened up my mind to basic human nature and some "true north" principles, in the words of Stephen Covey. In short, stakeholder management lets you learn a lot of human nature, which becomes useful in our personal lives as well. Cost, schedule and quality are important, but it is people basically who let you reach these goals.

PM allows you to do what you love: adapting to different project environments; facing challenges and changes; improving your knowledge base, your soft skills -- mainly your communication skills and your leadership among your project team. It helps you be more organized and proactive, and it is also a step to improve your personal life as well.

I agree with a previous comment: “PM is a character-building exercise.” Applying lessons learned from the previous projects that I have managed I am trying to be more in control of the “known unknowns,” having the opportunity to develop myself and to improve my performance.

I like being a project manager.

1. It is very interesting because every project is unique.

2. I am able to feel the difference I am making to the project thru personal initiatives.

3. Project management requires multiple skills and an open mind.

4. It always propels me to develop myself/reinvent myself.

Regards

Why? ... Once in a while miracles happen!

Great article. Can I translate it to my blog in Brazil?
Thanks in advance.

Yes, the project management stream is full of varieties. You will not have similar projects, you will not have same team retained in your next project. You may be in a different culture all together.

Thus, every start of a new project is a start zero point for everything.

You got to constantly prove your skills & abilities to down-the-line teams so that it works in tandem to make a project success story.

Thus, changing variables makes this profession dynamic & challenging in nature.

It makes me feel special and confident as a doer every time I take up a new/different project/projects and witness it evolve and happen.

You are right: some projects are hostile (as we say, as you said already), but why are they hostile, be it any environment? Does it mean we need to have some other method than the usual project management?

"And you never know what your next project will be like" -- again, what is expected from a Project Manager?

Being a PM gives an opportunity to lead & drive. It also gives me an opportunity to learn & excel.

It was kind of a shift from RM-2-PM (Wow! did I discover something here:)), a.k.a. reactive mode to proactive mode. I've learned how to forecast & manage risks.

Way to go!!

I too agree with you all. I like PM work for one reason: people management, which tests our nerves, where we can improve with relation to people. Some learning helps to improve our personal life.

Being a PM is a challenging role. You will always be tested on your hard and soft skills, especially the latter one -- hence the ability to communicate to all levels and to articulate your ideas and opinion are essential to survive. Apart from that, 70-80% of projects are less likely to meet their project objectives, thus making the PM role even harder. But, in the end, being a PM is a character-building exercise that hopefully bring out the best in you in all aspect of your life.

The desire to work with constraints and improve productivity and efficiency is paramount for me.

If faced properly, the challenges involved with managing project teams contribute immensely to our individual development. Lessons learned motivate us to always want to improve upon previous performance.

Project environments are always unique and different from one another, hence, the more project one manages, the more the managing ability improves as experience from diverse environments help to sharpen the individual skills.

Great insight into project manager's role. it's great to do what you love.

Working in project means that you're constantly facing challenges and changes. And it forces us outside our comfort zone. If managed properly, it's good for our advancement. On the other hand, being too immersed/obsessed with our role may cause physical and mental breakdown.

My view on managing project is balance, much like we're trying to balance our project's objectives with project constraints, we must balance ourselves too.

Appreciate your thoughts on being Project manager:

According to me, Project Management (PM) also presents us with following gifts:

1) Chance to develop your soft skills faster as you with different teams
2) Chance to travel as you might have to work at different locations for specific times as and when required by the project
3) As every project is unique, it helps us to tailor our thinking into specifics of that project without losing the track of general PM principles
4) As we gain more expertise into PM, it helps us shape our thinking to carry out our personal things (e.g. travel from one destination to another) as well in PM way
5) As PM is industry independent. It helps to contribute to different industries

I like what has been mentioned. In addition, PM gives me the opportunity to build my knowledge base easily and not limiting myself to one industry or specialty, and thus makes me more dynamic, skillful, and knowledgeable. As my first PM teacher used to say " an inch deep, a mile wide".

I totally agree: Working in projects brings you into new environments (companies, cultures, teams) very frequently. And still you are in one environment (i.e. project) long enough to penetrate, understand and hopefully control it.

Unfortunatly, not all project environments are great. Some are hostile, complicated and dreadful. And once you found a great project, you ought to leave once it is over. And you never know what your next project will be like.

About This Blog

Voices on Project Management offers insights, tips, advice and personal stories from project managers in different regions and industries. The goal is to get you thinking, and spark a discussion. So, if you read something that you agree with — or even disagree with — leave a comment.

All posts represent the opinions of the bloggers.

Follow PMvoices on Twitter

About Bloggers

Keep checking back because the voices for this blog will continue to grow and change to represent a variety of regions, industries and opinions.

Read blogger profiles

Voices Poll