Kanwal Nazim Celebrating Women in Project Management

Kanwal Nazim

Kanwal Nazim


Location: Sydney, Australia

Connect on LinkedIn


PPM Consultant – CEO PM Social – NSW Chapter Councillor Australian Institute of Project Management

Why do you enjoy working in the field of project management?

It combines all hard and soft management skills

What are your greatest achievements as a Project Manager?

I started my career as a Project Coordinator and I was extremely nervous to be working with people i see as role models and those who have excelled in the industry. I think my biggest achievement in this role is to grow into a stronger, more confident young project professional by facing my fears, demonstrating my abilities and being grateful for every day of learning.

I also run monthly networking events under my start up, PM Social where I organise events for project managers of all levels of experience and background to get together, talk shop and have fun. In only 3 months and two events, I have seen a double (100% increase) in the number of attendees at my events. Under PM Social, I offer the service of PM Buddy where I match students and young graduates with experienced professionals for mutual growth. I have two matches already and take pride in saying that one of my mentees, with her mentor’s help, has landed her first job in only 3 weeks of matching.

I am also NSW Chapter Councillor at Australian Institute of Project Management, the youngest on the board. I was a little nervous initially to be working alongside some of my role models but through their support and guidance, I am leading the Under 35 portfolio with another Councillor. I am very passionate towards helping young project management professionals, students and graduates alike, and hope to raise more awareness in the benefit of studying project management and hiring project management graduates. Some baby steps have been taken since my on-boarding this January such as planning an event for graduates at a civil engineering firm as well as raising concerns regarding students and graduates at the council level.

Many more ideas are in the pipeline and will be implemented soon, fingers crossed 🙂

Why is a career as a Project Manager a great choice for women?

A project manager does not only have great management skills but also is a champion at soft skills. Leadership, business psychology, team building, motivation, emotional intelligence are some of the skills that come naturally to women and add value to a project manager. A project manager is a leader, who has to keep their pack together and motivated along the journey and who knows that better than a woman?

How can women stand out in the field of Project Management?

Polish your natural abilities – there is a great leader, motivational speaker, influencer, multi-tasker, negotiator and listener in you already!

What are some of the challenges women face as Project Managers?

Young female project managers look for more flexible hours as the trend among millennials is shifting towards looking for experiences such as travelling while also pursuing a career. Most full time jobs do not allow this.

Also, young female project managers are far less than their male peers in number and feel pressurised to perform well and are expected to make a choice between settling down and advancing their career. In most cultures prevalent in Australia, they are expected to “sacrifice” because of lack of flexibility in support and junior roles.

What can we do to help women to be exceptional Project Managers?

For young female project managers, they should build confidence to lead, not follow. This can be done through providing them with networking opportunities, mentoring programs and a nurturing a community that addresses the challenges and helps navigate them to success.

Any other comments about Women in Project Management?

Help another sister like the one who helped you!


To celebrate International Women’s Day for 2018, I will be sharing the profiles and stories of some incredible women who have flourished in their project management careers. May they inspire you and the women around you to kick goals in the world of project management.

Read more about my ‘Celebrating Women in Project Management’ 50-day series here. Starts February 1, 2018.

Join the conversation!

  1. Submit your own profile as a PM to be shared and celebrated online!
  2. #CelebratingWomenInProjectManagement (Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn)



Join the Conversation