Traditional career advice is nice, but if you want to get the real scoop on something there’s nothing like hearing from people in a casual environment. There’s an ever-expanding variety of places to look—mentors, online communities (like our very chatty DPM Community), career coaches, and, yes, social media.
After working in the project management world for several years now, I’ve seen plenty of good (and some bad) advice out there on social media.
But since there’s so much noise on social media, I’ve rounded up a few of my favorite project managers on TikTok and Instagram who have legitimately good career advice for newbies and those of you considering a career switch to project management.
10 Best PM Influencers To Follow For Career Advice
- Theresa Mubenga
- Lloyd George
- Melissa Blackmore
- Alexis Allen
- Lauren Selley
- Project Manager Bestie
- Shatora Mills
- Bolu Erinoso
- Marielys Pagan-Stacks
1. Theresa Mubenga | @resasue
Theresa is a Tech CEO offering advice on resumes and interviews, education and certifications, and getting experience in the field.
Follow Theresa for:
- Advice on breaking into tech
- Why you should get an internship if you’re still in college
- The day-to-day view of life as a project manager (what is TikTok for if not aspiring to someone else’s lifestyle?)
In a recent couple of posts about breaking into project management in the current landscape, she says that, in her view, certifications aren’t necessary but they can help if you’re a career newbie. “It won’t hinder you to have the PMP or the CAPM, because it just looks better on your resume, especially somebody who’s coming from no experience,” she says.
Here’s part two of that explanation on how to break into project management:
2. Lloyd George | @lloydpmstuff
Lloyd uses his experience making the transition from customer support to freelancing in project management to help aspiring project managers (and those aspiring to a substantial salary bump, which he covers as well).
Get his take on:
- What you need to get started, even if you have no experience
- Whether certifications are worth it
- How to make freelancing work for you
- Moving into more senior positions
- Improving your resume
He’ll even send you a project management resume template for free if you text the number in his bio!
When it comes to his top tip for those starting out, Lloyd says, “I think the most important thing for any new project manager is confidence. When you first start … you’re probably gonna feel very very uncomfortable…People that are on your team don’t necessarily want you to have all the answers as much as they just want to feel confident that you’re gonna do whatever it takes to go find the right answer for them to be better at their job.”
Here are some more tips on getting started in project management from Lloyd:
3. Melissa Blackmore | @melissakblackmore
Melissa covers advice and basic project management terms and concepts so newcomers aren’t totally lost.
Melissa is also a great resource for:
- Navigating imposter syndrome, lack of confidence, and the uncertainty that comes with switching careers or looking for a new job
- Opinions on certifications
- Tips throughout the job hunt process, from writing a resume to interviewing well
Here’s Melissa’s take on what makes a great resume: “The secret is storytelling. Telling a story about your results and accomplishments and doing that very early on in the document in an easy-to-find place is key…You can specifically do this by replacing your career objective with a career summary or career profile, and adding 2 to 3 big accomplishments with measurable impact, or metrics…”
Here’s her advice for pivoting from another career to project management:
4. Alexis Allen | @projectmgmtmadesimple
Alexis has over 10 years of experience in project management and is sharing the wealth of knowledge and experience she’s gained.
Hear from Alexis about:
- Her path into project management
- How to interview well
- Where to focus your efforts when it comes to building your skill set
- Terms and concepts that newer project managers might not be familiar with yet, such as waterfall and agile, Scrum masters, and the triple constraint
When it comes to the most important skills for project managers to have, she says: “First is to be organized. As a project manager you’re gonna have a multitude of projects that you’re managing… Communication is very important as a project manager…Along those same lines, being able to navigate different personality types is also going to be helpful. And finally, being someone that is assertive and takes initiative.”
Also check out her analysis of whether the CAPM or Google PM Certification is more helpful for newbies:
5. Lauren Selley | @laurenselley
Lauren is a member of our DPM Community (shoutout to one of our own!). She's also project manager in tech and provides both career and productivity advice, giving her take on everything from whether project managers are useless to agile to what makes a great project manager.
Check out Lauren's socials for:
- Tips on the basics of project management
- Hacks for using project management software
- Explanations of the differences between roles in the project space such as product managers, Scrum masters, program managers, and business analysts
Here are Lauren’s thoughts on what makes a great project manager: “Everyone knows that project managers need to be organized, they need to help their teams find the right information, and be able to direct their teams to the right information really quickly, but even more importantly, they need to be proactive…and you absolutely can never assume.”
Here's her take on whether project managers are "useless":
6. Project Manager Bestie | @projectmanagerbestie
Project Manager Bestie (who doesn’t share their actual name on TikTok) brings levity to the struggles and challenges of project managers.
Their posts span several topics:
- Solid advice when it comes to deciding whether project management is the right career for you
- Tips and tricks for using project management software like EasyRetro, OneNote, and Microsoft Projects (it’s important for new project managers to familiarize themselves with commonly used tools)
- Good memes
Here’s their take on whether project management is a good fit for you: “Do I think it’s a career that everyone should get into? No…I would ask yourself some questions. Are you a leader?...Are you organized? Are you detail-oriented?...if you have those characteristics, then yeah, I say go for it. But I think being a project manager has a lot to do with your personality and if you don’t have the personality for it, that’s okay.”
Here’s an example of the kind of memeing you can expect from Project Manager Bestie:
7. Shatora Mills | @career_tora_mills
As a career coach, Shatora’s posts are tailored towards helping her audience improve their resumes, make higher salaries, and advocate for themselves.
Shatora is also not afraid of sharing hard truths that audiences might not want to hear:
- Why ‘manifesting’ doesn’t work the way you think
- Toxic job situations to avoid
- The unglamorous side of project management.
She has a regular series about ‘six figure skills’—transferable skills that you may already have and which are so valuable to employers that they can help you make a six figure salary.
Here’s one of her recent six figure skills (it’s a great one for project managers): “Process auditing. Oftentimes, if you’ve been working at a company and they have awful systems and processes, and you’re actually giving feedback and sharing how they can improve on those systems, or you’re identifying the actual breakdown in that system, that is called process auditing.”
Plus, one quick resume tip from Shatora:
8. Bolu Erinoso | @boluerinoso
Bolu is a digital project manager who shares highlights from her day to day in the role. She also talks about the merits of various types of degrees and project management certifications available.
Follow Bolu if you’re interested in:
- Pivoting your career journey (Bolu went from marketing and communications to project management)
- Finding out what project management skills you need
- On-the-job tips and tricks
Here’s how she responded when asked if project management is stressful: “Honestly, I find being a project manager to be pretty stressful, because there’s so many things that are happening that are outside of your control that you have to manage…it’s kind of like you’re always putting out one fire or another, so it’s definitely never a dull moment…”
Check out her top five skills that project managers need:
9. Taylor | @taylorpmp
Taylor (who doesn't use a last nam e online) fills her TikTok with advice based on her own project management journey working in tech and earning the Project Management Professional certification (PMP). She’s got tips on starting in project management and moving up with experience.
Follow Taylor if you’re also interested in:
- How your existing skills transfer to project management
- Getting your PMP certification, and getting your company to pay for it
- Time-saving hacks like project management templates
According to Taylor, “Getting certifications when you’re considering a career switch is not a bad idea, but there are a few other things you should also be doing…reach out to people who have that role on LinkedIn and ask for an informational interview. Ask people what their day to day is like, what skills they use, what skills they think it takes to be good in that job…Then take a course or get a certification…”
Here’s Taylor’s take on how you might move up in your project management career, once you’ve got a little experience under your belt.
10. Marielys Pagan-Stacks | @marielys_pagan
Marielys gives followers a look into her day to day as a project manager:
- Attending, leading, and scheduling meetings
- Taking notes
- Using basic project management concepts like MACD and the project life cycle
Her posts showing what her day looks like are useful for followers trying to decide if project management is the right career. She also frequently answers questions from followers on everything from certifications to whether her team has their cameras on or off for meetings.
Here’s her advice for people trying to get a job in project management: “…If you’re interested in project management, really look into the responsibilities of a project manager, really learn the ins and outs of a project manager…Start connecting with project managers…From there, you can decide if this is the right path for you…”
Here are her interview tips for beginners:
Armed with these tips on your job hunt or career change, go out and land that project management role!
The Digital Project Manager offers a training course aimed at project management beginners. Learn the ins and outs of managing projects well—creating solid project plans, managing budgets and costs, and tracking and planning for risks. Find out more about DPM School here!