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Member of the Month - Vijay James

Member of the Month

About Myself

The name is James. James without the Bond, but with the Attitude to "work hard and play hard"!  I'm wired to go out of my comfort zone and I love to push the limits of what I can accomplish in life. 

I started my career as a programmer for an eLearning company. I fell in love with UI/ UX and worked as a UI Developer, before having the opportunity to transition into Project Management while I worked for IBM and there was no turning back from thereon.

Today I am a seasoned project manager having experience over large scale IT implementations in Information Technology, IT Service Management, Change Management, Operations, Migration and Infrastructure Upgrades. 

I'm passionate about projects and people for both are unique and have their own brand identity!

Current Occupation

I currently lead government-funded learning and development programs at Skills for Change supporting newcomers and immigrants to integrate into the Canadian workforce, within their professional field and to pursue their entrepreneurial ventures in Canada.

Experience and Education

My craze for gaming led me to a world of computers and technology. I completed my Master of Computer Applications (MCA) at Loyola College, Chennai in India.  During the course of my career, I successfully pursued my Post Graduate Diploma in Business Management, which was sponsored by my then employer, IBM! I did my undergraduate in Physics (B.Sc.) at Bishop Heber College, Trichy. 

I am also a Certified Scrum Master and ITIL certified.

I started my innings as an ‘accidental project manager’ in IBM while supporting the Global End User Deployment Centre of Excellence team. I realized that project management complemented my techie skillsets and expertise. 

I contributed as Project Manager for Communications & Change Management projects targeting 380,000 IBMers across IBM worldwide, enabling IBM product upgrades to be installed at all endpoints and thereby ensuring a secure workplace and an enhanced end-user experience.

I led projects as Project Manager for B2B Enterprise Integration, facilitating digital transactions (order and invoice management) by on-boarding million-dollar clients into IBM's payment gateway - Sterling Commerce. I was also the Asset Owner for different applications and lead the IBM Global Privacy assessments for 27 B2B applications in compliance with European Union General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). 

I had the wonderful opportunity to contribute as Agile Project Manager and Scrum Master during IBM’s huge transition and adoption to an Agile work environment.

Why did I join PMI Toronto Chapter

After gaining phenomenal project management experience in IBM for 9 years, I made the decision to relocate to Toronto in 2018.  

As an immigrant with no extended family or friends in Canada, I found the PMI Toronto Chapter to be a great platform to broaden my network and to meet top-notch professionals from the project management community in Toronto. 

I had the opportunity to volunteer with PMIT thanks to my UI design skills and today I am an active volunteer with the Communications portfolio proudly supporting the deployment of the Weekly Scope communications. I also had the opportunity to contribute to the Technology Portfolio for a brief stint. Through my volunteering work, I have had the opportunity to interact with the Board President and Board of Directors that has greatly helped me to hone my leadership skills.

I recently participated in the PMI Toronto Chapter Professional Mentoring Program 2020 and the learning was profound. I am amazed at the value-add and support that the seasoned mentors offer to PMIT. 

I really am proud to be a part of the PMI Toronto Chapter. I want to contribute, grow, and be an active player in the project management community in Toronto. 

PMI Member since November 2018

Why do you plan to do the PMP certification

I breathe and live project management. My previous organizations were focused on adopting Agile delivery and I worked towards being Agile certified. But after relocating to Toronto, I understood that PMP is the buzz word associated with a project manager. If I were a knight in shining armour, then PMP is the Holy Grail! 

Greatest learning from PMP/CAPM

Preparing for PMP helped me to understand the execution of projects from the cradle to the grave. The biggest takeaway for me is that the application of the learning is not just limited to project scenarios but also applicable toward day to day real-life situations. Definitely working towards my PMP has helped me to broaden my ‘scope’! 

More About Me

Work Passions:  People & Communication (being customer-centric and having the ability to collaborate with cross-functional teams) 

Personal Passions:  Family, Food, Fitness, and Fun are the top of my list. 

In addition, I volunteer in my Church as the Treasurer and I love connecting with newcomers, sharing my journey, my success stories, and the lessons that I have learned.

Something interesting about me: 

I am a proud alumnus of IBM Corporate Service Corps which is IBM’s top leadership program and is awarded only to a select group of top performers who have been identified as potential future leaders of the IBM corporation. Getting selected for IBM CSC is quite an accomplishment within IBM as there is only a 10% acceptance rate amongst qualified candidates and the selection process is extremely competitive.

Through IBM CSC I had the adventure of a lifetime working in Morocco with Professor Adnane Remmal, Winner of the European Inventor Award.

Email:      vijayjamesjoseph@gmail.com

Website:  http://vijayjames.com/testimonial.html

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/vijayjames/