How to grow your Project Manager career in 2023 - A practical guide

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How to grow your Project Manager career in 2023 - A practical guide

How to grow your Project Manager career in 2023 - A practical guide

Author: Anna Le
Career 29 Jan 2023

What is the scope of a Project Manager in software development?

A Project Manager plays a big role in any tech company. They typically ensure that the project is progressing and completed within budget, scope of work, and timeline. These are some of the tangible KPIs. However, a project manager also has some intangible responsibilities like building solid relationships with stakeholders and other project members–both of which are essential for this role.

“For me, the Project Manager’s role involves managing human resources. This means I’m the one who advises team members on how to work together effectively. Besides that, I also assist in their short-term and long-term development. To maximize the project efficiency, my first step is always to ask 5W-1H questions to clarify the expectations of the CEO, the Product Owner, the Delivery Manager, and other stakeholders regarding the epics, and features." says Khanh Nguyen - Parcel Perform’s Project Manager.

There are various paths to advance your career as a Project Manager. In this blog post, we’re going to discuss:

  • An example of a Project Manager’s career path
  • Some key skills which can help advance your project management career

What are career pathways in project management?

The growth opportunities for this position are extremely diverse. Oftentimes, it also depends on the company you work for. You may begin your career as a Project Coordinator by learning how the project works, getting up to speed on project progress, reporting on the team’s progress, and more.

In reality, some of our Project Managers also have backgrounds that are not initially project-related. If you find yourself in this situation, don’t worry, this is normal. Even if you decide to experiment with other things, you can always circle back to project management later on in your career.

Trung Nguyen, our Delivery Manager at Parcel Perform, shares his interesting career path: “After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Information Technology, I worked as a developer for more than 5 years. Following that, I studied for a Master’s in Business Administration at RMIT University Vietnam and then transitioned towards a product management career.”

Fig 0

The number of projects, project size, and project complexity determine the level of the Project Manager profession. For example, in Parcel Perform, each project is built by 12-14 team members for 6 to 8 weeks on average. Some examples of our projects include our Premium Tracking Page and delivery notifications - all of which help build a winning delivery experience platform. More complex projects may run for a longer time (for example, a year) and involve more teams working together.

How to advance your Project Manager career?

01. Strengthen your Project Management knowledge

Taking some courses or earning some certificates can provide you with the necessary skills for this role, and develop a good foundation for your future career. Here are some project management-related certifications you can consider:

Our Project Manager, Khanh Nguyen, highly suggests that potential Project Manager professionals take the PMI® Certifications. This certification is from one of the most prestigious institutes in project management. It is also globally accepted, so you can apply it anywhere. “This certificate helps me have a solid understanding of what the role is about, and provides the necessary skills to manage projects better,” Khanh shares.

Besides getting certified, you can also get more insights from The website contains the latest information regarding project management. It also offers a community space where you can discuss topics with established Project Managers, and learn from them.

If you enjoy reading books, we recommend “A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide)” as a fundamental resource for effective project management in any industry.

On social media, there are various communities where you can have in-depth discussions on project management topics or some business cases. One such example is the Facebook group PMI Vietnam Chapter Official.

02. Brush up your communication skills

As a Project Manager, you are the connection between the Development Teams (Squads) and Business Teams (Key Account Management, Customer Service, etc). Both teams consist of technical and non-technical individuals.

To ensure a smooth flow of information, you will need to use your communication abilities to ensure stakeholders understand your requirements, or what you need their help with.

Even if you do not continue down the project management path, developing your communication skillset can be highly beneficial at work and in everyday situations.

03. Time is money. Learn to manage it well

When you’re a Project Manager, every minute counts. You’re the team member who is most deadline-conscious of anyone on your team.

There is one fundamental framework that is very simple but incredibly helpful for efficient time management. It’s the Eisenhower matrix invented by Dwight D. Eisenhower. Use it to prioritize your tasks and plan your time wisely.

Fig 1

04. Coach your team like a champion

In every project, your team members are the difference between success and failure, which makes developing people one of the most critical responsibilities for a Project Manager.

Fig 2

When receiving any requests from other stakeholders, your responsibility is to always raise 5W-1H questions like a journalist: What, when, where, what, who, and how. It helps you and your members have a clearer picture of what the business needs–and increase the chances of the project’s success.

Your working style could differ depending on the team members' size. Trung, Parcel Perform’s Delivery Manager, expresses a thoughtful viewpoint: “When my team is small, say 5 members, I can take care of each member’s progress. When I become a Delivery Manager and manage bigger team sizes, I’ll be more visionary, and guide the project goal and timeline of each squad instead of looking at team members’ daily tasks,” says Trung.


Additional competencies, such as those in negotiating, project planning, critical thinking, problem-solving, or even a sense of humor can improve your chances of success in the Project Manager role. And because these skills will gradually accumulate, having the courage to take challenges head-on will help you build up a strong skill set for this job.

After 6 years in a project management career, Trung is still mindful and strongly advises other coworkers, “You should be ready to take on new challenges and apply new initiatives to advance this career more quickly.”

Fig 3

When working with Parcel Perform, you learn “on the job” and get the chance to practice your skills in a supported environment – the key to long-term success.

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