With another design project completed, you may be wondering what’s next in your career. Letting go of the design process for some project architects is the next logical step.
Do you know how to move up from project architect to project manager? Being ready when you’re tapped to step out of your current role is the first step.
Chronicling the move up from project architect to project manager
A promotion to project manager or director often has its beginnings in casual conversation. That’s what happened to Frank, an exceptionally talented architect.
His portfolio represented the best projects in the metro area. Each design revealed something about his growth, which he pursued eagerly. Additionally, most people in the firm recognized that Frank could assemble and motivate teams because of his communication ability.
When several principals invited Frank to lunch, he was ready to deliver his pitch for becoming a project manager. The direct and short message seemed well-received because the others around the table were smiling and nodding.
They wanted Frank to move into a project manager position. He’d take on greater responsibility, including bringing in new revenue streams for the firm. He wouldn’t have time to design any of the projects himself. He would instead have to become a marketing and business development success.
Frank would either remain a designer or move into management by letting go of something he enjoyed.
Showing you’re ready for the next big step
Once you understand how your role at the firm will change when you become a project manager, it’s time to prepare yourself. These tips can help:
- Create a space for a conversation about the skills you have. Be ready to leverage them in a new position.
- Build out and share your portfolio. Be thoughtful in its compilation because it shows your successes, what you’ve learned and how you’ve grown – all of which are assets in becoming a project manager.
- What’s your pitch? Talk about yourself in a way that shows you’re ready to become a director or manager. Keep the message concise and detailed. You never know whether you’ll be sharing it in an Interview or airplane seat.
- Demonstrate flexibility and curiosity through continued learning and what your future might look like.
- Expand your network. Join professional organizations, link with others on social media, and include recruiters in that network.
When you’re ready to make the move up from project architect to project manager, take the time to solidify your brand. Your recruiter can help you create an impactful personal brand that shows you’re ready for the next big step in your life.
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