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Topics: Career Development, Leadership
"Senior" or "Lead" Project Manager?
Anonymous
I'm the first project manager at a small company and I've just acquired a team member from another department to help me. As such, I'm being tasked from my bosses to update my job description and title.

I'm trying to adhere to industry standards to set myself up well for the future, whether I'm with my current company or not.

Do you more often see a Senior Project Manager leading a team of project managers, or, do you more often see a Lead Project Manager leading a team of project managers? Are there more options that you see more frequently that I haven't thought of?

Thanks!
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Senior PM would work but do a good search to set what employers are hiring for and check out the titles.
From my perspective, the title of "Sr." in any professional capacity should be given based on knowledge and years of experience, as opposed to leadership function.
I wouldn't necessarily limit yourself to one title or another based solely on the size of your team. Rather, I would focus on your actual role.
If your function will be to lead project management activities within your company, I see no reason why your title shouldn't indicate as such.

It may be worthwhile for you to visit a website that lists average salaries and related job descriptions.
There are a few well known sites that have reliable information, which may help you decide the title that is more appropriate for you and for your company.
I see Senior Project Managers and rarely see Lead Project Managers titles being used.
"Senior" is just a title. There's no PMI or cross-industry standard for certification level, years of experience, or age. Your organization may or may not have such a standard, if they use the title at all, or it might imply additional duties that other project managers don't have.

I've never seen "Lead" used, but your organization can do whatever they'd like when it comes to job titles. Personally, I think "Lead PM" sounds like you're working on a large program involving multiple project managers. But if your organization is leaving the job description up to you, you should consider "SuperPM" or "Captain Project."
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1 reply by Eric Simms
Apr 05, 2017 8:38 PM
Eric Simms
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I should talk to my HR department about changing my job title to 'Most High Exalted Project Manager' or something similar. I might have difficulty fitting that onto a business card, though.
Apr 05, 2017 3:20 PM
Replying to Wade Harshman
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"Senior" is just a title. There's no PMI or cross-industry standard for certification level, years of experience, or age. Your organization may or may not have such a standard, if they use the title at all, or it might imply additional duties that other project managers don't have.

I've never seen "Lead" used, but your organization can do whatever they'd like when it comes to job titles. Personally, I think "Lead PM" sounds like you're working on a large program involving multiple project managers. But if your organization is leaving the job description up to you, you should consider "SuperPM" or "Captain Project."
I should talk to my HR department about changing my job title to 'Most High Exalted Project Manager' or something similar. I might have difficulty fitting that onto a business card, though.
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1 reply by Vincent Guerard
Apr 05, 2017 9:25 PM
Vincent Guerard
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You can also try "The Most Best High Exalted and Motivated Project Manager" more change not to fit on business card :-)
Never seen Lead, Senior is use in many other profession,
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1 reply by S Rajasekar
Apr 06, 2017 7:52 AM
S Rajasekar
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Agree with Vincent
Apr 05, 2017 8:38 PM
Replying to Eric Simms
...
I should talk to my HR department about changing my job title to 'Most High Exalted Project Manager' or something similar. I might have difficulty fitting that onto a business card, though.
You can also try "The Most Best High Exalted and Motivated Project Manager" more change not to fit on business card :-)
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1 reply by Marcus da Silva
Apr 07, 2017 12:40 AM
Marcus da Silva
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LOL! You can also have that title go around to the other side of the card.
I agree with my peers, Senior seems a better fit. Shall you manage several PM - not just one - perhaps you may also want to consider the title "Team Leader"
If you are going to lead a team of projects managers, you might like to be called a "Program Manager"
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1 reply by Vincent Guerard
Apr 07, 2017 8:49 AM
Vincent Guerard
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Should it be Program Manager or Portfolio Manager?

Program refer to many project interrelated, a Portfolio is many project that may not be interrelated.
In generic term normally a 'senior' role would become the 'lead' role within a specific project. So you might have more than one 'senior' role but only one 'lead' role.
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