I am coming up on my 22 year mark in the navy. Currently I am working my way to complete my bachelors in business management and will be pushing to complete my PMP certification. For those in the project/program management world, what training would you recommend? Are there any courses out there or specific programs I should look into to help make me more relevant and competitive when i make my transition in 2 years?
My linkedIn profile is above for reference.
I would suggest you get a PMI certification. It will help you in any job in the private sector. Also look at entry level logistics and supply chain college courses you can take online like Transportation 101, Warehousing 101, Process Improvement/Lean, International goods movement and Supply chain technology. Look into supply chain professional organizations like WERC.org and CSCMP.org for potential "local" meetings you can attend even though you are not a member to network with civilian supply chain folks. If you have more questions, connect with me on LinkedIn or send me an email- email@example.com
Agile certifications are hot in the industries right now, depending on what role(s) you are interested in. And, there are various agile organizations offering, but the most popular is still SAFe(TM). Many of the roles/certs have aspects of project/program management between organization/daily planning and technical vision & leadership.
Start Informational Interviewing as soon as you can. This will put you in touch with people doing the career you are focusing on determining what happens on a daily basis. I would suggest hooking up with HireMilitary and look at their guide on how to conduct good informational interviews. I would also find any online or in person how to use LinkedIn by Michael Quinn or another former military stressing the do's and do not's of this powerful tool. I would also see if you are eligible for a Skillbridge for program management. There is nothing better than getting to physically work in the role you have chosen.
The reason I am suggesting a quick start, you may find the private sector project management career is not your cup of tea. Understand the average American will change careers 3-5 times in their work life. This is according to Bureau of Labor Statistics, so you may find this impacting you prior to pulling the plug. Also keep in mind while you have been serving your country for the past 22 years your competition will have had anywhere between 4-8 successful job searches and new positions. That means creating a resume with proper keywords, value statements that measure up to the metrics the industry looks for and at least a couple interviews convincing the hiring team they were the right fit for the position and the company.
I think if you follow Michael Quinn and other former senior military who are honest about their transition and explain the right way to go about it, you will save yourself a lot of trauma in the transition process. As a former TAP facilitator most everyone coming into TAP wanted a "great" resume, not understanding that if you do not know what you want to do you are creating a document no one will understand or look at.
You are way ahead of many of your peers, and open to suggestions! This gives you a great leg up. YOU OWN THE TRANSITION, no one will hand you a key and it is a lot of work. Think of how much you have learned over the past 22 years, which means very little to the private sector, when I say means very little, I mean in your knowledge and terms from a military person, it has to translated into the career speak (Informational Interview) and ACP pick up a mentor also. There are tons of places and people willing to assist. Do not pay for a service some of the worst resumes have been paid for, you need to tailor to each job you apply for, use jobscan.co which will tell you what keyword match you met. Just one example of the many tips and tools out there. Thank you for your service, sacrifices and God Bless.
From your LinkedIn profile it appears you are already in good shape.
You could log onto the ACP webpage, click on the "Community" icon.
Then click on the "Advisors" tab
In the "Refine by" pull down box, select "Project Management"
Note the "Show More" box at the bottom of the page.
Examine the advisor profiles, and use the ACP message feature for advice.
You should conduct commercial & government job searches using pertinent keywords.
Examine the desired qualifications as stated in the job descriptions.
Target versions of your resume that highlight those qualifications.
Supplement training & certifications to meet those jobs you desire, possibly taking advantage of the skill-bridge program during your last 180 days of service.
ie.: Agile, Scrum Master?
I've added links to information & videos under sections of my EE webpage that might be useful:
http://eehot.com/ee.html#pm - Proj. Man.
http://eehot.com/ee.html#jobs - Commercial Job searches
http://eehot.com/ee.html#gjobs - Gov. jobs
http://eehot.com/ee.html#cool - DOD COOL
http://eehot.com/ee.html#mentoring - traverse BLS to find dream career, Skillbridge
http://eehot.com/ee.html#networking - 1 year FREE LinkedIn Premium
Commercial Job search "Project Management", your location (18 jobs)
Gov Job search "Project Management", your location (173 jobs)
Commercial Job search "Scrum" location unspecified (67,114 jobs)
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