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5 Tips For the Project Manager New at the Office
By Project Manage This

Congratulations! You landed the job, and it’s the perfect one for a PM type like you. Then comes the first day in the new office…

Being the new kid on the block is tough, no matter what your job is. But as a PM that will be expected to quickly ramp up and lead teams it can be downright daunting. You walk in the door and are bombarded with new faces, new processes, new PM tools, and new clients. Where to begin?

This is when one of your core personality traits come in handy; be proactive! Maybe the new gig offers up a stellar training plan, but sorry to tell you it won’t be enough. Your initiative is what will make the difference. Here are a few tips on how to gain your ground and embrace the new.

  1. Schedule meetings with other PMs – if your training plan is solid this is already part of the plan. If not, just make it happen. Don’t just ask about their role, ask about the teams. Find out whom the PMs loves working with and why. Ask about project process (believe it or not, ‘agile’ one place doesn’t necessarily mean the same ‘agile’ at the next place). Request that they step you through their most recent project launch and ask about what steps & internal tools they used to keep it on track.

  2. Schedule meeting with team members – you’ve met with PMs and found out who the top performers are. Now schedule meetings with these people. It doesn’t have to be formal; ask them out for a cup of coffee or join them for lunch. Now, ask them who their favorite PMs are and why. You’ll get gold from these conversations.

  3. Dive in – look at all the new shiny tools and practices. Playtime! Within a week or so you’ll be buried with your new project(s). Take this time to do tutorials and practice with the new tools.

  4. Get to know the clients – Spend time looking over recently released projects, find out who the stakeholders were and find out about them. Visit the websites, check out LinkedIn profiles, and ask your manager or cohorts what they’re like as people.

  5. Ask to be invited to project team meetings, even if you’re not going to be on the team. This is when you go into sponge-mode. Listen, watch and learn.

Congrats again, and cheers to your success.

If you have tips for the newbie, please share them! Add a comment.

Project managers, program managers, producers, account managers, coordinators, and the like. The unsung heroes. We’re the ones that keep things moving and get it done on time and on budget. We keep our teams motivated and on track, make sure our boss and/or client is happy, and ensure that the community we’re building for get the best product possible. You never see us sweat, rarely hear us swear, and are amazed at how calm we are when fires erupt. That’s because we’re good at what we do.

We absolutely love our job. Making things happen, getting things done, that’s our nature. We never ever vent at work. Ok, rarely do. But we do have tales to tell. “Project Manage This” is a place for PM types to love and hate the career we’ve chosen.

If you have a tale to tell tweet @pmthis

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