Project Management Development

29 Oct

I was contacted by Robert Kelly from Kelly Project Solutions a few weeks to see if I would be interested in being a guest on his show called KPS Chatter.  I was quite honored by his invitation, as I first met Robert on Twitter after we were both featured on The Project Box’s Top 10 Project Managers on Twitter earlier this year and have enjoyed reading his blogs and content he posts on Twitter.

Below, you will find a few of the questions I was asked, but please feel free to listen to the entire 15-Minute KPS Chatter Show. I love his KPS Chatter shows, as they are quick 15-minute interviews full of great content and starts off any day on a great note, so I encourage you to listen to others too! Thank you Robert for the honor & opportunity to be a guest on your show, as I really appreciate it!

Question: In speaking with fellow practitioners, how do you feel organizations are doing with regards to formal development of their project management resources?  

I find project management is a unique field to be in whereas most people don’t tell their parents they want to be a project manager when they grow up (Correction: if we have grown up yet!), but more that their employer might find traits in an employee, such as: strong organizational or communication skills, highly motivated individual, and have the ability to be assigned a task, pull together a group of people to get the job done, and execute a project on time and within budget, and make them a project manager.

Therefore, most of us in the field do not receive formal education, but undergo possibly a mentorship program with an experienced project manager or learning by fire per say.  I feel formal education does provide you with a great foundation, but you have to have the ability to take those tools that you learned and test them out in the real world.  I am the type of person that if I don’t know something, I am very curious to read content on the web or pick up a book and talk to others in the field to find out more, but I also am the type of person that I like to attend a class, as such by taking a project management course at my local university this semester.  Self-learning does take motivation to do, but also formal education it’s not a cookie-cutter approach where you’re provided a complete toolbox that will always work in all occasions, so you’re constantly polishing your skills with on-the-job training or by attending formal classes at a university or seminars.

Question: Why is important to move from the accidental manager and invest in PM development?

I think if you want to become an even better, more efficient project manager that can reduce the time to execute a project, keep a project within budget and in scope, and know what others have tired in the past, it comes down to learning and investing in Project Management development, as further education can make a Project Manager’s life so much easier by knowing some tips and steps that can help increase their day-to-day skill-set.

Question: What would you say is a good development portfolio? 

I feel a good development portfolio is one that includes:

  • Read books
  • Join a local PMI chapter
  • Join twitter & read other PM’s blogs, increase your PM network & relationships, join PMChat
  • Attend a college class, whether it is a project management, communications, or leadership or a management course
  • Attend seminars
  • Learn from other Project Managers’s in your local community, as most are more than happy to help you throughout your journey as a project manager
Please comment below with your thoughts and comments, as I would love to hear them!

Image Credit


4 responses to “Project Management Development

  1. KellyProjectSolution (@KellySolutions)

    October 30, 2011 at 11:53 am

    Lisa, it was an honor to have you on the show. We are a huge fan of your work and look forward to having you on again.

  2. Lisa Drake

    October 30, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    Thank you Robert! I really appreciated the opportunity and had a great time talking with you on the show!! 🙂

  3. Stephanie Allen

    November 1, 2011 at 7:03 pm

    I agree, project management is a unique field. When you discover you like being a PM, and you’re good at it, you compliment your skills with professional development. Not only is it a way to improve but it is a way to show you are dedicated to your career path. Thank you for the Q&A!

  4. Lisa Drake

    November 5, 2011 at 9:20 am

    Great comment Stephanie, I agree with you! Thank you for reading the post!


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