How to transition into project manager or process improvement/optimization? | Coursera Community

How to transition into project manager or process improvement/optimization?

  • 9 November 2020
  • 1 reply
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Dear Vera, 

Thank you for your availability and your time. I am Francesca, living and working in Italy.

I have a degree in foreign languages (English, German and Arabic). Straight after graduation I obtained a scholarship for a professional course in International trade for SMEs, which unfortunately was provided by a governamental Italian Develpoment trade office and consequently is not internationally recognized. 

I have been working as Customer service back-office in different industries (bank, Food&beverages, Industrial automation) for the past 9 years, now I would like to make a step in career as project manager or process improvement/optimization (I mean, I have until now been the one who “does the work” but the credit goes to the “bosses”. I would like to be held responsible and be valued for results instead of just “keep doing”). 

My question is: which courses on coursera would you advise? I am thinking about going back to university as part time student and get a Degree in Economics. Do you think that might be a good move or not? (i have been considering that since a lot of Job post require Economics degree).

Best regards


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Since you already have a university degree and some relevant experience, so you might not need a whole new degree to transition into a career as a Project Manager. Depending on specific roles you will pursue, you might want to get a Project Management certificate such as PMP or Prince2. 

Keep in mind, that project management is a broad field: there are technical project management roles and a variety of non-technical ones. You should begin by identifying the type of role that would be the best fit for you - likely the ones where more of your existing experience would be applicable - and researching requirements for those roles. Reviewing job descriptions and LinkedIn profiles of people who are project managers is a great starting point. This Coursera Career Change Guide provides a framework for researching roles and then positioning your experience and skillset in the most relevant way. 

Once you have a clear understanding of the role you are pursuing, it will be easier for you to understand what kind of education or training you need. Coursera offers everything from individual courses to PMP prep courses (such as this one from UCI), and Google will be launching their Project Management Professional Certificate on Coursera soon as well.

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