Junior PMing For Reals

I’m about half way through my second work term here at Vigilant - which is crazy; time is going so fast! - and so far it has been quite a different experience compared to my first work term earlier this year. 

When I was here from January to April, there wasn’t a whole lot of construction going on since it was the winter. I visited a couple sites where projects where getting finished up, but most of the work had been completed already. This time around, I’ve been visiting two different sites a few times every week and have been able to see the progression starting from the very beginning. What were just some holes in the ground during my first week are now growing walls and roofs - very exciting. I’ve learned so much from my on-site observations and getting to spend some time outside during the day is always nice. My steel-toed boots don’t always go with my outfit, but I suppose its a sacrifice I’m wiling to make for my education. I’m looking forward to seeing what stages each building will reach by the time I finish in December. 

My first time at Vigilant, I completed a large research study about public construction in Canada. Myself and fellow student, Erin, ended up with a 200 page report and some pretty interesting findings. During those months, we largely governed ourselves. We scheduled interviews with professionals, did individual online research, and created a survey, all with minimal guidance. We worked together every day, basically on our own terms, and somewhat separated from the rest of the office.  Although it wasn’t really ‘project management’, we both gained so much from the experience. This time around, I feel very much a part of the project management team. I’m involved with several projects for different clients, led by different Vigilant PM’s. So far I’ve helped create important project documents like Terms of References, RFPs (Request for Proposals), and Project Charters, and I’ve helped prepare several cost estimates for a variety of projects - from new buildings to water and sewer upgrades. This week I was even asked if I’d ‘take the lead’ on a new project! That’s how much they trust me! It’s a fairly small project, of course, and I’ll have all the help I need, but it’s still quite an honour to be given a responsibility like that. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Feeling like a true "Junior Project Manager”, 

- Emma