Certification Insider

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Cornelius Fichtner help you with your PMP Exam Prep (https://www.project-management-prepcast.com) as well as earn free PDUs (www.pm-podcast.com/pdu). Passing the PMP Exam is tough, but keeping your PMP Certification alive is just as challenging. Preparing for the exam requires an in-depth study of the PMBOK Guide and dedicated study discipline. And once you are PMP certified, then you are required to earn 60 Professional Development Units (PDUs) every 3 years to keep your certification alive. Let me help you make this journey easier with tips and tricks on how to prepare for and pass the exam as well as efficiently earning your PDUs once you are certified.

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Episode 415: Emotional Intelligence Tools for Smoother Projects

Episode 414: How To Make Better Choices For Your Projects

Episode 413: When the Organization thinks they don't need Project Management

Episode 412: How to Integrate Risk Management into Agile Projects

How to Upgrade Yourself to The PMBOK Guide 6th Edition

Episode 415: Emotional Intelligence Tools for Smoother Projects

(Click to download MP3...)

Stephen Maye, Projectified host

Ever feel like your projects would run much more smoothly if everyone just did their job without nagging?

Help is on the way.

Emotional intelligence is the way to really connect with everyone on your team. Take project management to the next level using emotional intelligence principles to guide your interactions and activities. Today we discuss practical applications of emotional intelligence for everything from communications to meetings to celebrations to managing remote teams.

This interview with Kim Wasson (LinkedIn Profile) was recorded at the uplifting Project Management Institute (PMI)® Global Conference 2017 in Chicago, Illinois.

In the interview, we discuss how to apply emotional intelligence concepts to day-to-day project management tasks and activities (i.e., communications, team building, assignments, goals, and priorities) and learn to recognize both emotional intelligence and cultural intelligence signals and use them to tailor communications and daily operations.

(This interview was originally published on The Project Management Podcast.)

Posted on: June 25, 2018 06:56 AM | Permalink | Comments (3)

Episode 414: How To Make Better Choices For Your Projects

Categories: Project Management

(Click to download MP3...)

Stephen Maye, Projectified host

As leaders of teams and projects, we regularly face choices and decisions that have downstream consequences.

Learn why the familiar pros-and-cons approach seems to make sense—but is profoundly flawed, and how our biases influence the options we consider and the choices we make. No technique can guarantee great decisions every time, but you will leave this session with practical ideas and tools to make better choices for you, your team, and your projects.

This interview with Andy Kaufmann (LinkedIn Profile) was recorded at the invigorating Project Management Institute (PMI)® Global Conference 2017 in Chicago, Illinois.

In the interview, we identify the steps in making better decisions based on a well-researched model that can be applied personally and professionally. We also explain how biases influence decisions and how to address those biases to make better decisions.

We’ll talk about how to execute your projects and grow your project management skills all while setting your business and IT customers up for success. We'll see how organizations without a PMO can be effective by tracking basic metrics, and how key templates in your project management toolbox will help your project managers be effective.

(This interview was originally published on The Project Management Podcast.)

Posted on: June 04, 2018 12:48 AM | Permalink | Comments (4)

Episode 413: When the Organization thinks they don't need Project Management

Categories: Project Management

(Click to download MP3...)

Stephen Maye, Projectified host

When an organization has a structured PMO, using your project management skills can be easy.

But, what if your organization doesn’t have a PMO or doesn’t even like the rigor of project management? What should an experienced project manager do?

This interview with Jen Pfaff (LinkedIn Profile) was recorded at the dazzling Project Management Institute (PMI)® Global Conference 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. (Trust me... it was 2017 even though I say "2018" in the opening...)

We’ll talk about how to execute your projects and grow your project management skills all while setting your business and IT customers up for success. We'll see how organizations without a PMO can be effective by tracking basic metrics, and how key templates in your project management toolbox will help your project managers be effective.

(This interview was originally published on The Project Management Podcast.)

Posted on: May 18, 2018 04:50 AM | Permalink | Comments (7)

Episode 412: How to Integrate Risk Management into Agile Projects

(Click to download MP3...)

Stephen Maye, Projectified host

Agile has gained popularity in part due to its ability to effectively respond to issues as they arise, improve stakeholder satisfaction, and increase focus on value-driven delivery. A major challenge for many project managers is knowing how to effectively plan, identify, and manage risks when using agile approaches. This discussion addresses how to integrate proven risk management techniques with agile approaches to increase the probability of project and organizational success.

This interview with Laszlo Retfalvi (LinkedIn Profile) was recorded at the exciting Project Management Institute (PMI)® Global Conference 2017 in Chicago, Illinois.

We look at how to develop proper project risk management statements required to support agile approaches to project management and learn to apply proven risk management techniques, which every project manager should consider as part of any agile approach.

(This interview was originally published on The Project Management Podcast.)

Posted on: May 08, 2018 11:10 PM | Permalink | Comments (5)

How to Upgrade Yourself to The PMBOK Guide 6th Edition

Categories: PMBOK Guide, PMP Exam

How to Upgrade Yourself to The PMBOK Guide 6th EditionAs of March 26th, 2018 the Project Management Professional (PMP)® exam will be based on A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide) Sixth Edition. The Project Management Institute (PMI)® will grant no exceptions. So, if you find yourself in a situation where you had been studying the PMBOK® Guide Fifth Edition with the plans for taking the PMP® exam prior to March 26th, and you realize that this is just not going to happen, then you are probably wondering what to do now.

In a nutshell: You now have to study the PMBOK® Guide Sixth Edition because that is what you will be tested on.

You Cannot Study Only What Has Changed

You can start learning the new knowledge by reading the PMBOK® Guide Sixth Edition, which was released in September 2017. However, due to the extensive changes between the Fifth and Sixth Edition, you cannot simply learn the changes. Yes, there are a great number of articles available that talk about the changes. But unfortunately, you cannot simply study those sections that have changed alone. There are too many interactions between concepts, processes, and ITTOs to make this feasible. Instead, you need to take a holistic approach to learning the PMBOK® Guide Sixth Edition. Here we will review some of what has changed in this most recent edition, as well as some tips on how to prepare yourself to now take the "new" PMP exam based on the most current edition.

Conceptual Changes To The Sixth Edition

The changes start with a realignment of information in the first three sections. Information formerly discussed in these sections is now covered in the first two sections. Section one, "Introduction", now includes high-level information on the selection of development approach (predictive, iterative, adaptive, and incremental) based on the nature of the project. Section two covers "The Environment in Which Projects Operate". Information on enterprise environmental factors and organizational process assets are covered as before; however, also included now is information covering different organizational systems to include governance, management, and types.

Section three is now completely dedicated to "The Role of the Project Manager". This section includes information on the project manager’s sphere of influence and competencies. Here you will also learn about the PMI Talent Triangle®, which focuses on the technical project management, leadership, and strategic and business management skills required for project managers. Understanding the PMI Talent Triangle® will be invaluable to you once you become PMP® certified and you need to keep your skills up to date and need to report your professional development units (PDUs) to maintain your certification.

One of the most notable changes between the Fifth and Sixth Edition is the inclusion of agile and adaptive methodologies. Starting with section four, going through section 13, you will now see several new subsections to include: trends and emerging practices, tailoring considerations, key concepts, and considerations for adaptive environments. You will also see some information on using agile specific tools and techniques such as iteration planning and sprints.

In fact, if you purchase or download your copy of the PMBOK® Guide then a copy of The Agile Practice Guide is included to show the growing importance of agile in project management.

Knowledge Areas an Processes

There have also been numerous changes made in both the Knowledge Areas and Processes. Two Knowledge Areas have been updated to better reflect how work is actually accomplished. What was the Project Human Resource Management Knowledge Area is now the Project Resource Management Knowledge Area. This has changed because a project manager doesn’t just manage human resources on a project, they manage all of the project resources. The Project Time Management Knowledge Area has been changed to Project Schedule Management Knowledge Area because a project manager actually manages work as defined in the project schedule, they do not manage time.

Some processes have been renamed to improve consistency and clarity, as well as to be more in alignment with what project managers actually do such as managing, monitoring, and facilitating versus controlling. Those that have changed are:

  • 8.2 Manage Quality – was Perform Quality Assurance
  • 9.1 Plan Resource Management – was Plan Human Resource Management
  • 9.2 Acquire Resources – was Acquire Project Team
  • 9.3 Develop Team – was Develop Project Team
  • 9.4 Manage Team – was Manage Project Team
  • 10.3 Monitor Communications – was Control Communications
  • 11.6 Monitor Risks – was Control Risks
  • 13.2 Plan Stakeholder Engagement – was Plan Stakeholder Management
  • 13.4 Monitor Stakeholder Engagement – was Control Stakeholder Engagement

And these are just some highlights of what has changed. If you dig into the details you will find that there are dozens and dozens of small, medium and large changes in every chapter, paragraph, and sentence.

Project Management Hasn't Changed

However, it must also be said that just because the PMBOK® Guide has changed, project management itself hasn't changed. The fundamental way in which projects are managed is still the same. Only the publication that describes the activities & techniques that are commonly accepted to be good practices on most projects most of the time has changed. And just because it updated some tools and techniques for Project Cost Management, that doesn't mean that Earned Value systems need to be changed as well.

But in order to pass your PMP exam, you will need to be aware of everything in the PMBOK® Guide Sixth Edition. Studying them takes effort, dedication and time. There is no shortcut.

PMP "Upgrade" Guide To The Sixth Edition

Since you've already studied the PMBOK® Guide Fifth Edition, here is our recommendation on how to approach the Sixth Edition:

1) Begin by studying Appendix X1. This appendix provides an overview of the changes made in the Sixth Edition. This will give you a good understanding of the conceptual changes that were applied.

2) Skip Appendix X2. You don't need to know this information for the exam.

3) Study Appendix X3 on the topic of agile, iterative and adaptive project environments. You may even want to open up The Agile Practice Guide that you received for free with your copy of the PMBOK® Guide and glance at it while reviewing this appendix.

4) Study Appendix X4 for an understanding of the key concepts in each Knowledge Area. You will notice obvious and subtle differences to what you know from the Fifth Edition.

5) Study Appendix X5 and learn that "tailoring" has a much bigger role than it previously did. In the Fifth Edition, the term was mentioned only twice in the whole guide. In the new Sixth Edition tailoring has a dedicated section in each Knowledge Area.

6) Study Appendix X6 to be introduced to yet another fundamental change because the Sixth Edition presents tools and techniques differently than previous editions. In short: tools and techniques are now grouped by purpose.

7) Study the Glossary from beginning to end. Maybe not all at once, though. Instead, review a couple of pages a day as part of your studies.

8) Study Table 1-4 on page 25. This will give you a good overview of the Process Groups, Knowledge Areas, as well as the processes and how they are mapped. This is, in fact, the only information from the PMBOK® Guide that I recommend you know by heart. You should be able to draw this table from memory onto a blank sheet of paper.

9) And finally (and unfortunately): Study the complete PMBOK® Guide twice.

When studying the new PMBOK® Guide, familiarize yourself with the new inputs, tools & techniques, and outputs of all the processes. A good approach is to study the Data Flow Diagram for each process. These diagrams illustrate the flow of the inputs and outputs and will strengthen your understanding of how they move between the many processes. It will also help you understand the integrated nature of all the processes in the guide.

Summary

As you might have guessed by now, "upgrading" your knowledge to this new version of the PMBOK® Guide is not something that you can do in just a day. The changes in the PMBOK® Guide Sixth Edition are extensive and cannot be learned and understood on their own.

While your PM experience is the main focus of the PMP Exam, it will also be necessary for you to have an in-depth understanding of the PMBOK® Guide to be able to correctly answer many of the questions on the test. This is because the PMP exam uses the PMBOK® Guide as its primary reference for identifying the correct answer to a question.

I therefore recommend that you plan a minimum of two weeks of intense study.

Posted on: April 23, 2018 10:46 PM | Permalink | Comments (11)
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