Help a Sales Manager become a Project Manager

dangkhoadangkhoa Registered User new member
edited September 2017 in Help / Advice Forum
My background: I'm a store manager for the largest authorized retailer of one of the Big 4 cell phone carriers in the U.S. I'm good at what I do. I've hit or exceeded sales targets for blah blah blah just take me at my word, I'm good at what I do (and this surprises me on a daily basis). My job involves incessant problem solving, ridiculous adaptability, a little low-grade technical know-how (most things short of scripting or coding), managing people, and understanding every aspect of my store's business from inventory to P&L statements. It is a diverse skillset, and that is kind of the problem.

For various reasons I'm considering a career change. I have an opportunity to join a company that values all of that, but wants a little more. Luckily I know what they need from me before they know that I don't yet have it. At that organization I'd most likely land in a Project Management role. This is not something I will ever have the opportunity to learn with my current company. Lack of actual experience may not be such a hurdle; complete unfamiliarity with the field would certainly raise eyebrows. I need to specialize.

I need some resources on agile development and scrum. This company has recently transitioned to it so everyone is kind of an amateur, according to an inside source, and that means I have a brief window in which to get on board and learn alongside them without looking like an idiot. Still, I'm going to have to learn more than just the basics of what those terms mean. The goal here is to interview well in 4-6 weeks and be able to demonstrate how my career experience would make me a good candidate.

A short list of questions:

-what resources directly related to Project Management should I review? books, online seminars, etc. are all fair game
-how much coding knowledge should I be prepared to have for a role like this? I know just enough C++ to have passed a Comp Sci course in 2003, and that's about it.
-beyond programming: what other technical knowledge might be a good asset? even if it doesn't happen in this time frame, if Project Management is a role I want at some point I need to know what would prepare me for it

Given that this is largely a community of software-minded folk, I figure this is as good a place to ask as any. Help me make a career move, H/A!

dangkhoa on


  • NewblarNewblar Registered User regular
    edited September 2017
    The most well know certification for project managers is PMP which is run by the Project Management Institute (PMI). It looks like they've added something about agile in their latest edition of material but I don't know how specific it is to software development. You can purchase their body of knowledge from their website, get study books from Amazon or take classes from a college or training centre. Don't know if any of this is helpful short term as it likely isn't specialized enough for your current need but is something to look into long term if you get the role.

    Newblar on
  • PowerpuppiesPowerpuppies Registered User regular
    Maybe that jeff southerland book "scrum: doing twice the work in half the time"

    Topics seem related to what you want to know about agile. Don't swallow it whole, just use it as a resource to pass the interview

  • schussschuss Registered User regular
    If you're into scrum, get a cert from scrumalliance or PMI offers one now too I think. This is a deep deep well, but you can start with agile software development (80s looking cover) as that was the original text. Additionally, find out what flavor of agile they're using to learn more (SAFe, Spotify etc.)

Sign In or Register to comment.