Project management skills develop graduate

How to Develop Project Management Skills as a Graduate

As a graduate, you are typically assigned specific projects by your manager. Although you may not have control over the broader scope of projects within your team, it is still essential to develop project management skills for your own workload. This will not only help manage your current tasks, but will also improve your leadership skills as you develop in your career.

Here are 4 ways you can develop project management skills as a grad:


1. Seek Out New Opportunities

Communicate your interest in project management and ask your manager if there are smaller projects you can lead or contribute to. If a new project is forming in your department, volunteer to be part of the team. This allows you to learn from experienced colleagues and gain exposure to different stages of project execution.

As part of this new project, request to shadow a senior manager with project management experience. Observe how they manage their time, delegate tasks, and communicate with stakeholders.


2. Develop Both Hard and Soft Skills

Hereafter, familiarise yourself with project management software such as Teamwork, Asana, Trello, or Microsoft Project. Familiarity with these tools will enhance your ability to plan, track, and manage projects.

Improving hard skills is important, but remember to also focus on improving soft skills, such as communication and risk management. Learning how to effectively communicate and identify risks will develop your skills in future. Visit our previous blog post, ‘3 Reasons Why Soft Skills are Important for Graduates‘.


3. Learn From Your Mentor

As a For Purpose graduate, you receive a mentor who is highly experienced within their field. Use their experience to learn from them – ask how they manage their projects and to share best tips for developing your own skills. Hereafter, you could create a development plan with your mentor to help your progress.


4. Keep Track of Your Learnings

Create a document of your achievements to date and the skills you’ve developed. This documentation can be valuable when discussing your progress with your manager or applying for future roles. Keeping track of your learnings will also be useful if you’re considering working towards gaining a project management accreditation, such as a Project Management Professional (PMP) certification.


Remember, being proactive and demonstrating your eagerness to learn are key. Spend time self-learning and networking to get the most exposure to project management development. By actively seeking opportunities and showcasing your initiative, you can gain valuable project management experience within your graduate role – this will position you strongly for future opportunities within your organisation or elsewhere.


Want to learn more?

Are you a graduate, eager to learn more tips around workload management, skills development and more? Visit our news page here, or find out more about the For Purpose Graduate Programme here.