Project Management

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Topics: Career Development, Construction, Consulting
Beyond Construction Management - is it possible?
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D'Aydra Allen Project Manager| None Baltimore, USA
Greetings!

Please call me Dee. I am a brand new PMI member and super excited to learn and grow within this organization and my local chapter. I have been in construction for about 15 years now and worked my way into project management as I gained knowledge and experience. I love so much about project management and administration, I also enjoy cost estimating, training and mentoring others.

Lately, my excitement for construction has starting to fizzle, but do I have other options? I've decided to go after my PMP certification as I figure out my next career move. I can't see any downside to becoming a PMP, regardless of the industry I'm in. My husband has suggested consulting (which I have dabbled in before), and that does excite me, but does it need to be strictly within construction? If I went for another job after getting my PMP, how much would my skillset play a part in being selected for an opportunity over my industry experience? 

I don't mean to ramble, but there are so many things to consider and I would love some input from others who may have changed industries within Project Management, not necessarily from/to construction. 
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Keith Novak Tukwila, Wa, USA
Hi Dee,
Construction may be your entryway to other industries without being your next employer's prime function. For example, my employer is an aircraft manufacturer. We have hired PMs from civil engineering where their background related more to airport construction than panes, but they had the basic PM skills and the intelligence to apply them in different contexts. Many come from manufacturing backgrounds and learn the business admin side as they gain more responsibility. Large companies in IT, healthcare, etc. still renovate or expand their physical facilities. Finding the right project in another business domain can get you in the door to lead projects less related to physical construction, once you gain that initial credibility.

I once showed a pharmaceutical company how to reorganize their warehouse similar to a grocery store where I worked during college stocking shelves. I didn't know anything about the products, but I knew how to stock shelves of soup cans and pill bottles aren't much different. What I changed seemed obvious to me but my employer was stunned. The trick to changing fields may be as simple as identifying how your current personal skills actually are applicable to many different industries.
Keith
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1 reply by D'Aydra Allen
May 28, 2024 7:02 PM
D'Aydra Allen
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Thank you, Keith! I appreciate this feedback.
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Rami Kaibni
Community Champion
Senior Projects Manager | Field & Marten Associates New Westminster, British Columbia, Canada
Dee, welcome to PMI and this community. After 15 years of experience, consulting is certainly one option and construction management consulting can be your starting point. 75% of what we do is related to our soft skills which are transferable from one industry to another and the rest is related to the technical aspects which are related to the specific industry you’re operating in. Moreover, your project management skills are also transferable between different industries so as Keith mentioned, you should identify how you skills can be applicable to different industries and tailor your resume accordingly.
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1 reply by D'Aydra Allen
May 28, 2024 7:05 PM
D'Aydra Allen
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Thanks, Rami. That makes lots of sense! I guess I have a little work to do.
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D'Aydra Allen Project Manager| None Baltimore, USA
May 28, 2024 4:39 PM
Replying to Keith Novak
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Hi Dee,
Construction may be your entryway to other industries without being your next employer's prime function. For example, my employer is an aircraft manufacturer. We have hired PMs from civil engineering where their background related more to airport construction than panes, but they had the basic PM skills and the intelligence to apply them in different contexts. Many come from manufacturing backgrounds and learn the business admin side as they gain more responsibility. Large companies in IT, healthcare, etc. still renovate or expand their physical facilities. Finding the right project in another business domain can get you in the door to lead projects less related to physical construction, once you gain that initial credibility.

I once showed a pharmaceutical company how to reorganize their warehouse similar to a grocery store where I worked during college stocking shelves. I didn't know anything about the products, but I knew how to stock shelves of soup cans and pill bottles aren't much different. What I changed seemed obvious to me but my employer was stunned. The trick to changing fields may be as simple as identifying how your current personal skills actually are applicable to many different industries.
Keith
Thank you, Keith! I appreciate this feedback.
avatar
D'Aydra Allen Project Manager| None Baltimore, USA
May 28, 2024 5:20 PM
Replying to Rami Kaibni
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Dee, welcome to PMI and this community. After 15 years of experience, consulting is certainly one option and construction management consulting can be your starting point. 75% of what we do is related to our soft skills which are transferable from one industry to another and the rest is related to the technical aspects which are related to the specific industry you’re operating in. Moreover, your project management skills are also transferable between different industries so as Keith mentioned, you should identify how you skills can be applicable to different industries and tailor your resume accordingly.
Thanks, Rami. That makes lots of sense! I guess I have a little work to do.

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