Project Management

Project Management Central

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Topics: Career Development, New Practitioners, Talent Management
How did you get your first PM position with no experience?
I continue to learn new skills and sharpen my skills, I graduated from college, I passed the CAPM, I am currently learning CSS, Javascript and HTML... My resume is getting better but I can't manage to get an interview for volunteer positions.

What can I do differently? All feedback is appreciated. Thanks.
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Try to look for a Project Coordinator role. This is a great start.
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1 reply by Angela Sirls
Aug 01, 2018 6:54 PM
Angela Sirls
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Thanks for your feedback. Yes my job searches include: Project Coordinator roles as well as, Associate Project Manager, Assistant Project Managers and recently included scheduler. I make it a point not to apply for positions where I am not qualified. Ideally, Id like a position where I report to a Senior PM who would allow me to assist with projects increasing, where I can learn and grow as a project manager.
Project coordinator in medium size company will be a start... not in big projects company
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1 reply by Angela Sirls
Aug 01, 2018 7:00 PM
Angela Sirls
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Thank you!
I was working in a company as sales and I pushed myself into a small project and made my way.
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1 reply by Angela Sirls
Aug 01, 2018 7:12 PM
Angela Sirls
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I spent over 15 years at a LARGE company where I held various compliance roles and had the opportunity to manage compliance projects but when they were complete I went back to my position. I was laid off shortly after the last project along with 2000 other staffers. I decided to take the opportunity to finish my degree and study for the CAPM. I am ready.
Aug 01, 2018 5:39 PM
Replying to Rami Kaibni
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Try to look for a Project Coordinator role. This is a great start.
Thanks for your feedback. Yes my job searches include: Project Coordinator roles as well as, Associate Project Manager, Assistant Project Managers and recently included scheduler. I make it a point not to apply for positions where I am not qualified. Ideally, Id like a position where I report to a Senior PM who would allow me to assist with projects increasing, where I can learn and grow as a project manager.
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1 reply by Rami Kaibni
Aug 01, 2018 7:19 PM
Rami Kaibni
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Good luck with your research Angela. Check the PMI Job Board, you might find some vacancies there too.
Aug 01, 2018 6:08 PM
Replying to Kevin Drake
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Project coordinator in medium size company will be a start... not in big projects company
Thank you!
Aug 01, 2018 6:26 PM
Replying to Kevin Drake
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I was working in a company as sales and I pushed myself into a small project and made my way.
I spent over 15 years at a LARGE company where I held various compliance roles and had the opportunity to manage compliance projects but when they were complete I went back to my position. I was laid off shortly after the last project along with 2000 other staffers. I decided to take the opportunity to finish my degree and study for the CAPM. I am ready.
Aug 01, 2018 6:54 PM
Replying to Angela Sirls
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Thanks for your feedback. Yes my job searches include: Project Coordinator roles as well as, Associate Project Manager, Assistant Project Managers and recently included scheduler. I make it a point not to apply for positions where I am not qualified. Ideally, Id like a position where I report to a Senior PM who would allow me to assist with projects increasing, where I can learn and grow as a project manager.
Good luck with your research Angela. Check the PMI Job Board, you might find some vacancies there too.
I started as a seriously technical dude. Application programmer, then DBA. Got sick of badly organized projects, so I slowly did more & more of the PM work. On a new account I convinced my company it was easier for me to oversee others doing techie work and me being the PM vs me educating the PM on how things really worked.

I'm not a fan of starting off as a coordinator, as people get stuck doing secretarial work. Scheduling meetings, arranging lunches, etc. It's a rut rate-wise, good luck ever breaking through to a higher value and hence higher rate/salary job.

I think it's far better to start off in a related discipline, then taking over. I've had QA folks do more & more oversight, then move into QA. Or BA. Obviously programming too. You can command a lot more respect, hence larger projects, when you can show people you used to be one of them. I haven't been technical in 15 years and I still tell people they'll need to work harder to con me than anyone else.
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1 reply by Angela Sirls
Aug 01, 2018 11:30 PM
Angela Sirls
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Thank you.
I started through analyst roles. As someone with strong business acumen and a handful of technical talent, I was able to sit b/t the business and development teams to assist with bridging the gap(s) b/t business needs and technical solutions.

Also, do not hesitate to reach out to a professional resume writer. If you are not getting any calls/interviews, it may point to a need to modify your resume. Maybe you are just not telling your story well enough. It is worth the investment.

We all wish you the very best.
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1 reply by Angela Sirls
Aug 01, 2018 11:39 PM
Angela Sirls
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Believe it or not this has not crossed my mind but I believe this might be the answer. Thank you!!!
Hi Angela. It was by getting involved in a project while performing another role. I think this might be quite common.
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