Project management practices can also be very interesting if of course, the approach you use allows you. After participating last year in an experiment exploring the BVOP Project Management methodology and successfully outpacing the team that followed traditional project management principles by a few weeks, I became passionate about Agile thinking and the business-oriented principles of BVOP.

My role in the project was a software developer. However, a long time passed and something spontaneous in me prompted me to change my professional daily life. More time passed. Today I already work as a project manager.

Two weeks ago, I helped Rita Gavelis write her report and review for the BVOP Certified Project Manager title, and a few days later I received an interesting job offer in the field, which I accepted with interest.

My first week as a project manager

My first week as a project manager was extremely dynamic and interesting. Although I have very little experience in this field, although I work and do something completely different, all the topics and tasks that I had quite enriched me and gave me a different perspective on things.

The differences between the project life cycle and project management processes

Thanks to different assignments and encounters with different situations, I was able to find the differences between the project life cycle and project management processes, how the processes are established and already built, while the life cycle is formed by ourselves and us, depending on our company and policies and we can form it so that each phase of this life cycle is as useful as possible and gives results.

Agile methodologies

I also found some interesting facts about Agile methodologies. Until now, I had no idea that Agile originated in Japan. I have always wondered why Agile is so difficult to be perceived by Western countries. But now I understand the answer, namely, the difference between East and West, the mentality of each nation is different and for this reason, some of the things that are proposed by Agile methodologies are sometimes foreign and even incomprehensible to us.

The difference between a Product Director and a Program manager

Along with all this, I managed to learn quite interesting concepts and terms. It was quite difficult for me to distinguish between a Product Director and a Program manager, but now I know that a Program manager is a person who leads a team of subprojects that come together on a common goal. The subprojects themselves actually become part of a program and it is this program that is run by the Program manager. In addition, we have a Product Director – a person with extensive experience who also builds various types of reports, reviews budgets for projects and leads a group of Project managers. I also never suspected that there was a position to monitor the effectiveness of my performance as a program manager, I had no idea that there was a concept of the functional manager.

Along with all this, I discovered several of my positive and strong qualities, namely – my desire to learn new things and the constant enthusiasm and desire to cultivate and discover new challenges. It is these qualities of mine that have always helped me to move forward, to develop, and not to get stuck in the same place.

How exactly the business works and how it affects us developers

Since I’ve always been more involved in product development, I’ve never had a look at exactly how the business works and how it affects us, the developers. I’ve always wondered why a product manager cares so much about meeting deadlines, communicating with us, constantly asking us questions, and being interested in what’s going on. And the answer is quite simple – communication between all of us and the pursuit of a common goal leads to all this. In order for a person to be a successful project manager, he must actively communicate both with his managers and with the customers and people who develop a product.

There are many roles and positions in Project Management

Another key moment in my current week as a project manager was discovering new roles and offering different people to take on those roles. Although it was difficult for me at the beginning to distinguish between the different roles, I did not give up and so I discovered another positive quality of my own – perseverance and will not give up even if it is difficult for you and not to understand something. Yes, everyone makes mistakes, but in this way, one learns and manages to move forward. Through this situation, I was able to understand that when certain people are not suitable for any of the proposed positions, it is right to find new ones that are suitable for these people, and not just to fill the current positions.

The benefits of conflict for the development of the novice project manager

My experience with the employee, who was not satisfied with our company, was also quite valuable. Despite the complicated situation and the unpleasant conflict of interest created by this former employee, I was able to reap the benefits and negatives, to analyze the events and thus discover both his mistakes and ours as a company. It is the ability to analyze such delicate situations that develops a person’s thinking and makes him look at things from a different angle.

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