3 Tips for a Smooth Transition to a Project Manager Role

An ascension to a project manager position is a significant milestone in one’s career. It is the point where one goes from being a specialist to taking higher accountability for outcomes, people, and process. A project manager position is the ideal stepping stone to a leadership career path.

Also read: Importance of project management acumen in career progression.

In this blog, I will share 3 tips for a smooth transition to a project manager role.

Create a role blueprint for yourself

Create a role blueprint for yourself

Every organization looks at project manager roles very differently and while a lot of the expectations are laid down clearly on paper, there are always nuances that one needs to figure out along the way. In my mind, it is always good to create your own role blueprint that maps your role with respect to organizational objectives, the metrics for success, the key stakeholders, customers, team members, challenges and risks and the tools at disposal. Once you create this universe, you can chart a 12-18-month roadmap for yourself and use that to measure how you are faring in the new role. I recommend finding a good mentor in the organization who can act as a sounding board for validating your thought process and can provide valuable insights on course correction. As time passes by, you can keep refining your blueprint by incorporating learnings.

Develop your individual leadership style

Develop your individual leadership style

A project manager role often gets templatized, especially in IT delivery environments. The daily routine, process focus, status updates, the reports and other tactical elements can sometimes end up making the role very one-dimensional if approached with a sense of “managing things”. On the other hand, approaching it as a leadership role adds a significant amount of value to the individual and organization. As a project manager, you need to develop a leadership style that you are most comfortable with some room to adapt to the organizational working style and team. I find that collaboration, communication, and character are the foundational pillars that one can base their leadership style on.

Also read: Three traits of leadership that cannot be taught

Make data your friend

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This is the age of digital transformation. Data and Analytics are right the heart of the business. As a project manager, you need to understand and subscribe to the importance of data-driven decision making. Project management tools are a treasure trove of data for monitoring and controlling productivity, expenses and risks. With the analytics sophistication that exists today, it has become very easy to not only track key business metrics but also predict behaviors and anomalies. AS a project manager the sooner you learn to take advantage of these techniques and tools, the more effective you will become.

One of my mentors gave me a valuable piece of advice when I became a project manager. A Job or a role description is one perspective of an expectation of a role. Finally, it’s what you make of the role that really defines your success in the role. I hope this blog gives you some additional perspective on how to approach the project management role.

Author: Ravindra Wankar, Co-Founder at Celoxis

Ravindra Wankar - Co-Founder, Celoxis Technologies

About Celoxis:

Celoxis is an enterprise-class project management and PPM tool that helps companies streamline management of projects, timesheets, expenses and business processes, specific to their organization. Over the last decade, Celoxis has specialized in delivering improved collaboration and increased efficiency for Enterprises globally, across Industry verticals. To know more visit www.celoxis.com 

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