= Best route to becoming a project manager =

I’m currently 25 years old and I’ve been working construction full time for 6 years, but I’ve been on job sites my entire life. I specialize in EIFS and masonry. Recently thinking about my future I’ve come to the realization that it’s in my best interest to try and become a project manager in construction. Any insight on what is the best way to go about this. Meaning courses I should take, other job experience, etc

Stick with it long enough and you might have the opportunity, though it might not be what you think it is, or maybe you'll like it

I work for a commercial GC, 5 years as carpenter, 2 years as a foreman, 15 years as a site superintendent. 2 years ago I got asked to be a project manager. I have to tell you, it. I thought it would be awesome, 72 degrees every day, no weekends, slack office job. It blows. You're either super busy or don't haveto do for days on end. I made twice the money out in the field. Subcontractors constantly lie to you, try to extort extra money, don't read the spec book, etc. Its like baby sitting aof preschool kids. Iit

Spent 2 years flinging emails and product submittals back and forth between subs, architects, engineers, and owners. Recently got back out as a site superintendent after telling my boss being a PM. Couldn't be happier

Might be different working as a project manager for a subcontractor or a specialized field, but boy, a GC project manager is anightmare

This is the best response right here. Everyone on-site thinks being a PM is cushy, but it only appears that way from the outside. I’ve been a laborer, PE, assistant super, super, and now I’m a PM. Super was the shittiest, but PM is the most stressful. Especially on hard bid projects. Everyone’s trying to financiallyyou from every direction

To be fair though, it’s still a better option than remaining in the trades into your 60’s. I know very few tradesmen who’s bodies aren’t totallyby age 50. As a PM you just have to worry about heart attacks 😂
This is a very real response. I worked as a laborer for years. Very little as a superintendent and I hope I never have to again. I never minded labor, but I hated being a superintendent

I got into the office because I figured out the estimator was the only estimator- and was looking to retire- no one else could do it. I took estimating classes at a college for a couple of years afterwork and on weekends. Got certified

After a year of bouncing between the office and the field- I was made full time office late last year- now I estimate our projects and take on about 4-5 jobs at a time as the project manager

There are things that are better- like a (somewhat) regular schedule- though i never really have a day off anymore, no rain days, salary etc. Butoverall- I miss driving a dump truck listening to an audiobook, I miss being physically tired after a day of concrete, I miss getting paid to exercise, was in way better shape etc and I never knew how little stress I had day to day and this is the biggest thing I took for granted

I get phone calls every day I don't want to answer. late at night, early in the morning. I get bomb dropping phone calls at dinner with my family OFTEN, I've gotten threatening texts while putting my kids to sleep. I'm stressed out about 1000000 times more than I ever was in the field. So many of the obstacles I have to overcome I have absolutely no control over. So much lying, so much extorsion, so much squeezing by bigger companies/clients/firms

None of my buddies in the field have any idea howit is and they think I just watch youtube videos all day- this takes its toll because I spend so much time every day making sure they are taken care of, they have work, they are safe, that i pick the right projects for them

its little reward, high risk, high stress. Man be careful what you wish for. One wrong decision can put you out of business

I started as a GC PE and I can confirm all my PM’s had this exact vibe. Unless they just delegated literally everything and took the company for a ride. Yea they made 300k til they got fired 6 months in….

Can confirm. I was a PM for a GC for 15 years and finally jumped to the dark side as a PM for a sub. Similar pay, less hours, some stress but not near as bad as being a GC where 95% of the work is subbed out and you have almost zero actual control of schedules

Is there any other suggestions you would have for someone starting out their career in the industry? I’m graduating in April and thinking of being a PE for a GC
Yeah, I don't think I want to stop working in the field anytime soon

It seems like it takes a certain type of psycho to like this job. My boss who I worked for a lot and I would ride around with all the time was the super or project manager depending on the jobs and he had aof strokes. Him as well as the other super I worked with were always constantlyout about budgets and employees and they would use me for all sorts ofthat was going wrong. I guess he was lucky we did everything and basically never had to hire subcontractors as an electric company. The one time he did hire aof work out to a sub theyup the whole project and aof people who didn't know what they were doing (including me) had to fix it all. Never hired another sub again over the next two years and figured everything out on our own. Was a great move and I'm surprised more companies don't do it if they pay for the right people

Be about 6' tall, dark hair, workout enough to be big but not super bulky, keep a tight haircut, wear fitted clothes
Without a degree you'll probably have more luck pursuing the superintendent path. There are PMs without degrees and superintendents with degrees, but neither are the norm in the industry

being a PM. site superintendent, senior superintendent, general superintendent, senior general superintendent, construction executive

In that order, Work each title for 3-5 years for a GC in a specific field. (Except multi family) after the 3-5 years at a GC go to another one as the one step higher job title and pay raise

With your background, I would recommend looking for a CSA Superintendent position

From what I’ve noticed, being the offspring of one of the owners really helps
I’m a project manager for a regional masonry company now and for me the barrier to entry was nothing extravagant. I did have a specialized degree in traditional masonry but it was geared toward an artisanal trade degree rather than business. In my 6 years as a commercial masonry PM I’ve picked up all the business knowledge I’d need through experience. I don’t have any certifications other than the degree… I think going the subcontractor route is less formal than management on the GC side in terms of necessary certificates and qualifications but it could just be my experience. Feel free to DM if you have questions since we do share that masonry-specific background

First thing you need to do is schedule all of the trades to work on the same day. Then order all of the wrongafter making me reschedule universe for your "special" project

Woah woah. Slow down he should start of as a junior or assistant PM. Your trying to make him head PM day one
This is a construction sub, so the consensus might disagree, but the best way imo is to get a Civil Engineering degree, get a job in design, construction, or plan review with legitimate responsibility, pivot into project management when the opportunity comes up

It's much easier, faster and cheaper to rely on existing social connections if you already have them to get a superintendent position with your experience and go from that, to PM work. That's not always an option for everyone

Any other paths are probably going to rely on a decent amount of nepotism. If you have a relative or something that owns a construction company, obviously that's the easiest route, but you probably wouldn't be asking

If you become a PM without both the design and construction experience, you'll probably have some friction with your interactions from the opposite group

So your advice to become a PM is to go to college full time for four years, then work your way up the ladder for about five to ten more years
I think an associates degree and some leg work pushing your resume while still in school would be the “easiest way”. Companies always looking for student project engineers. Get hired while still in school. If your lucky they might pay you to follow through with 4yr degree. Or finish the associates and based on your previous performance and work load of the company they will probably make you a PM

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