The future of our Project Management community is dependent on the number of professionals and their professional readiness; quantity and quality. It is a bold statement, and some of my peers may disagree.
During small and large projects we have experienced situations where team members are outnumbered by tasks and challenges, and their professional experience was not in par with project’s complexity. In these situations we tend to complain about lack of qualified PM practitioners. Complaining doesn’t solve the problem, and cannot be counted as a lesson learned because we are not really looking to prevent this from happening again.
What can be done? As we learned from books and our experiences, start with the end in mind; who will be the members of the community of qualified Project Management practitioners? One answer is within reach to all of us, high school students can be exposed to the principles of Project Management, motivating some of them to pursue the CAPM certification as soon as they graduate, as long as they fulfill all PMI‘s requirements for this certification. This is achievable and there are few successful stories.
As one of the PMPs who are dedicating their time to teach these classes in high schools, I can tell you there are teachers and students who are very interested in gaining this knowledge. PMI’s Western Michigan Chapter (wmpmi.org) is running “Nine Through Twelve Project”, an initiative planned and executed to develop the next generations of leaders in Project Management.
While this is a small step, it is the beginning on working to build the future of our PM community, showing that we care and transfer knowledge for more successful projects.
Let’s increase the size and quality of our community of project practitioners, one high school at a time!