I have held such positions as Housing Assistant, Policy Director, Political Chairman, and Corporate Paralegal. “Project Manager” has never appeared on my business card.
Yet, I do not think a Political Chairman could raise $10,000 for a volunteer organization during the great recession, nor could a nonprofit Policy Director coordinate his staff to meet city, state, and private grant deliverables of community outreach during the foreclosure crisis, nor could a Corporate Paralegal meet all federal filing deadlines with the necessary, legally binding documents, without gratefully learning and implementing project management practices.
To provide an example:
When I was elected the founding Chairman of a state-filed Political Action Committee, a dedicated team with little structure and less budget trusted me to bring the PAC into relevancy.
We organized knowledge transfer sessions for team members to gain experience from one another and we collaboratively brainstormed ideas to push us forward. It was my responsibility to make sure our plans were put into action.
I prepared a workflow and we reviewed it as a team (A small part of our 1Q 2012 plan is displayed here). We agreed on our roles, delegated as such, and immediately got to work. With the calendar clearly in front of us, we knew what we had to do and we knew our deadlines.
It was my job to keep us on schedule and to ensure our high quality of work product.
The stakes were high. If we missed our due dates or were ineffective, not only could our organization suffer from it, but more so, we could lose an entire election.
By the end of my term, our group of twelve individuals had grown to recruit across a wide map.
We even helped win a few elections.
I am very grateful for the opportunity to lead the PAC. Doing so proved to me that a dedicated team with organized management can make the furthest reach goals come into grasp.
I enjoyed applying my organized skillset to that position’s role, even though “Project Manager” was never part of my title.
Ironically, I think that unconventional development and application of those skills are what make me prepared and able.
I look froward.
Thanks for reading!