Progressing Your Project Management Career in Lockdown.

Speaking on the PMI Projectified podcast last month Lindsay Scott was asked:

“This is such a fascinating time to be in the process of building one’s career as a project professional. Because so much is uncertain”

“How are you counseling people as they plan out their careers over the next couple of years. How has the pandemic affected how one should proceed”

The vast majority of people will want to play safe right now, which means they are more than likely to stick where they are; even if they are in a role or organisation they have been thinking about leaving or not happy in. It’s understandable to do that right now. A lot of people will have commitments that will require a steady stream of income and unless they have something to fall back on they won’t be willing to put themselves at risk.

However, some people do have a different appetite for risk and ultimately it boils down to the level of risk each individual is comfortable with. We could decide to put our career plans on hold for now, or we could be a bit more entrepreneurial; as we know there are always lots of opportunities that arise in a period of adversity.

If you do like to take a risk then perhaps now is a good time to consider your options. Why not take the first tentative steps towards something new? You will still need to do your homework first (rather than going in completely blind) and ask yourself: have you got the right proposition for the market place and do people want the goods/services you are able to provide.

Use Your Project Skills to Assess Your Own Risk

Why not use the mitigation of risk as you would on a project? Why would you not apply the same kind of thinking to your own personal situation of what you’re trying to do there? It’s a very individual thing. As I said, we all have a different approach to risk, I like a little bit of risk so how I would mitigate would be very different to somebody else that really is risk averse.

In the U.K., we’ve always had this thing where to work in government seemed to be a bit, I have to say, not very exciting. The projects are all very big and lengthy and don’t really scream creativity or innovation.

But actually, what we’ve seen—and there’s been a great case study that came out really recently about how the department that pays out for things like unemployment benefits and stuff like that—they’ve had to really pivot and change the way that they have been delivering services throughout this pandemic.

And their story is fascinating about how they’ve had to really use digital being one of the approaches, but how they’ve really had to embrace and move quickly in that kind of agile spirit to ultimately get money to the people when they needed it in desperate times. That kind of environment sounds pretty cool to me. It sounds very, very different to how they’ve always been perceived to deliver projects before in the past, and it’s like, “Wow, what’s going on there?”

You can listen to Lindsay speaking on the Projectified podcast in full here>>>

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