Project Management

Putting PM Philanthropy into Practice

Dr. Andrew Makar is an IT program manager and is the author of the Microsoft Project Made Easy series. For more project management advice, visit the website

I like volunteering. Although, I’m not a huge fan of company sponsored volunteer events where you pack food boxes, paint a Thanksgiving Day float, dig gardens or repair a dilapidated home. This may be due to the fact that I can’t swing a hammer with any real accuracy and manual labor just isn’t in my wheelhouse.

I prefer to volunteer for activities that leverage my project management skill set. Volunteering for events that connect with people and help them learn a new skill or accomplish a personal goal is more rewarding that packing boxes with canned food. Project managers don’t always have to volunteer to build a project schedule or manage a non-profit organization’s financials. We perform these activities during the day and it’s a refreshing change when we can apply our project management skills to help individuals and organizations improve.

Project management develops a strong skill set in communication, organization, planning, goal setting and leadership. All of these skills can be applied to help individuals and organizations improve the way they operate and approach problems and challenges. One way I put PM philanthropy into practice is by advising an undergraduate student organization. It’s been 18 years since I left Central Michigan University, although I still try to find opportunities to give back. In 1993, I was a…

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