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John P. Reiling, PMP:: Lead the Charge. Take the Initiative

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Leading the charge means taking the initiative……which begins with you.

Earning your PMP certification can help you to better ‘lead the charge’.  And, conversely, learning to ‘lead the charge’ will definitely help you to become a more effective project manager – whether you are a PMP, CAPM, or neither.

Taking the initiative means getting ahead of the curve – and making yourself valuable with the right toolsets at the right time.

Starting with the End in Mind

Things start to happen when you start seeing yourself as what you can be, rather than what you are.  You begin to create a vision, and when you hone and internalize that vision, you take the initiative… and become a leader.  You “pave the way” rather than “follow the path”.

Your Personal Vision

Therefore, regardless of your job title, consider yourself a leader. No matter your talents and skill sets, consider yourself a mentor. Whether you have children or not, consider yourself a role model.  WHETHER YOU ARE A PROJECT MANAGER OR NOT, CONSIDER YOURSELF A PROJECT MANAGER!  Start defining your life by these roles, and it will change how you view the world – and how the world views you!

A Vision for Your Organization

Can you articulate your organization’s vision?  Ask others to describe what your organization’s vision is?  How closely aligned is your vision and their vision?

Now, based on that exercise, what changes do you think are needed in your organization?  And the big question is “What do you think YOU can do to make things happen?”

What can you do RIGHT NOW?

While it is good to be realistic, it is also good to stretch a bit.  Try to strike a balance, and try to think of something new and different from the usual that YOU can do right now – OR that you could do, IF SOMETHING ELSE WERE DIFFERENT.  Remember that change begins with you!  Consider this quote:

“You get the best out of others when you get the best out of yourself.”

— Harvey Firestone: Tire executive

You may be an aspiring project manager who is not sure where to start.  Your ‘stumbling block’ may be in ACQUIRING SOLID PROJECT MANAGEMENT EXPERIENCE.  It is the same as the old ‘chicken and egg’ story:  “What comes first?”  Once you get that experience, and qualify to take the PMP exam, you will be on your way…

So, with this in mind, you may need to open your mind to a variety of routes to get where you want to go.  It could be that your route to project management experience is a little different than expected; it often begins by becoming an expert at something that is not itself project management, but that puts you at the center of action for your project.

Consider the possibility of adding expertise at some sort of tool that could add value – and make you valuable – for the success of the project.  Project Management Training Online has online Microsoft Project training, but also just introduced training in the following areas:

  • SharePoint
  • Excel
  • Visio
  • PowerPoint
  • Word
  • Access

What could it mean for you?

Could it be that learning PowerPoint would enable you to be the go-to person to create project presentations?

Could it be that learning Access or Excel would put you in the driver’s seat for gathering, manipulating, and analyzing critical data related to your project?

Could it be that learning Visio would provide your project team with valuable and much needed process tool expertise to serve your stakeholders?  You could be the person that brings those skills.

A big tool today is SharePoint.  Could becoming the SharePoint expert on your team put you at the Crossroads of information and document flow, as well as collaborative discussions on your project?


John Reiling’s site, Project Management Training Online, provides PMP and CAPM certification prep training online, and also provides online, 24×7 online training  in SharePoint, Excel, Visio, PowerPoint, Word, Access.

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