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A blog that looks at all aspects of pmp certification and all the other PMI certifications. We will provide helpfull information about obtaining those certifications, also helpful study materials and in general what it needs to become a professionell PM. We like any feedback!

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Situational Project Management

17% off this January 2017 for new The PMI-ACP® Exam Simulator!

Introducing "MP4PM-MindmaPping for ProjectManagement" - Part III

Introducing "MP4PM-MindmaPping for ProjectManagement" - Part II

Introducing "MP4PM-MindmaPping for ProjectManagement" - Part I

17% off this January 2017 for new The PMI-ACP® Exam Simulator!

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17% off this January 2017 for new The PMI-ACP® Exam Simulator!

What are the features of the new PMI-ACP® Exam Simulator?
It has 4 simulated exams of 120 questions each. A total of 480 exam questions. Covers 7 domains of the PMI-ACP® Exam. Live feedback available for student feedback on the simulator questions.

What will students get?
• 90-day access to PMI-ACP® Exam Simulator realistic questions.
• Exam course of advanced Project Management Institute (PMI)® exam strategies.
• Sample exam score worksheet for monitoring exam practice results.
• Contact Hour worksheet to tally your contact hours.
• Forum access for discussions with other students.
• Exam Tips newsletter.

Will students get the complete sets in January?
No, it will be a progressive release. Here is the timeline for the release of the simulated exam sets:
• Exam sets 1 & 2 with 120 each questions will be released on January 2017. Price will be $59 for 90-day access and $220 if bundled with Agile PrepCast (Elite package).
• Exam set 3 will be released on February 2017. With a total of 360 questions, it will then be sold at $79 for 90-day access and $230 as Elite package.
• Exam set 4 available by April 2017. Complete package price will be $99 for a total of 480 questions to access for 90 days. Elite package price becomes $240.

Our Recommendation: Purchase either The PM Exam Simulator or the "Elite" bundle in January, even if you are planning to take the PMI-ACP Exam in April or later. This makes financial sense because your 90-day access only begins when you take the first exam/quiz in the simulator. So you can buy it in January and then simply wait until April (or later) to take your first exam. This will allow you to access all 4 Exams with a total of 480 Questions (starting in April), but you only paid the price for 2 exams! It's the cheapest you can get it.

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Posted on: January 26, 2017 10:13 AM | Permalink | Comments (4)

Introducing "MP4PM-MindmaPping for ProjectManagement" - Part III

In Part III of the Introduction of our “MP4PM – Mind mapping for Project Management”we will not only provide you the next general “MP4PM” features; we will also introduce you the next deliverable/result of “MP4PM” so you can already see how “MP4PM” will work and look like.

If you have missed the first two Parts of our Introduction you should first have a look here:

Introducing "MP4PM-MindmaPping for ProjectManagement" - Part I

Introducing "MP4PM-MindmaPping for ProjectManagement" - Part II

 

Now let’s have a look on the next general features “MP4PM” will provide you:

MP4PM Intro part three

Not bad, right? Well, there is still a lot to come ... 1.1.2 MP4PM review Business Case

 

OK, let’s come back to the next installment of “MP4PM”. Again we had great support of the projectmanagement.com community and so we had just released the Version 1.0 of the second deliverable (to use project management wording). This time it is a map/template what should support you as a project manager in reviewing the business case/documents which are often the basis for a project initiation, right?

And so the map/template is called “review business case”.

We have promised, that “MP4PM” will be closely aligned tot the PMBoK Guide and the business case or equivalent documents are known as PMBoK Guide develop charter flow chartan input to the “develop project charter” process in the PMBoK Guide fifth edition, right?

We have done a version 1.0 already, but of course - like the complete “MP4PM” framework - this deliverable will be continuously improved and developed further. If you want to participate in this development, please feel free to add your valuable inputs in the corresponding discussion threads at the end of this posting. Any feedback is highly appreciated!

You can access an interactive online version of the “review business case” map here (or just by clicking on the picture above):

http://www.projectmanagement.plus/mp4pmmaps/1.1.2%20MP4PM%20review%20Business%20Case.html

Please use this version for review only.

If you want to use the map and/or work with it, then please download it from here:

http://projectmanagement.plus/en/mp4pm/mp4pm-downloads

For downloading the map/files you need to be logged in on projectmanagement.plus.

“review business case” is not only available as .mmap (what is the MindManager file format, but could also be opened with Xmind for instance), it is also provided in several other formats like the usual MS Office formats for instance.

Please try out and let us know your feedback/critic and/or additions; highly appreciated!

In our next blog we will introduce you the next “MP4PM” features and may be we will talking already about the next deliverable what is actually work in progress.

Until next time ... ;)

 

===========================================

If you want to contribute to the map please refer to the following discussion threads; we have created one discussion thread for each branch in the map for a better overview:

Posted on: December 21, 2016 10:09 AM | Permalink | Comments (8)

Introducing "MP4PM-MindmaPping for ProjectManagement" - Part II

In our last blog we had started with the Introduction of our “MP4PM – Mind mapping for Project Management”. In this blog entry we will not only provide you the next two “MP4PM” features; we will also introduce you the very first deliverable/result of “MP4PM” as a preview, so you can already see how “MP4PM” will look like and how it works basically. This way you can see what to expect in near future. And the best is: it is ready to use out of the box for anybody who wants to try out or just having a look. 

But first let’s have a look on the next two features we will provide you within “MP4PM”:

Sounds interesting for you?

OK, let’s come back to our first result out of “MP4PM”. With the great support of the community at projectmanagement.com we have just released the Version 1.0 of our first deliverable (to use project management wording); it is a questionnaire (as mind map of course) for the very first initiation meeting with your project sponsor in the project initiation phase (if you are in the role of the project manager) and it is called “Knowing the Sponsor”.

Since we have said, that “MP4PM” will be closely aligned tot the PMBoK Guide you may wonder now cause “Knowing the Sponsor” is not a PMBoK Guide Process and also not an ITTO, right?! Furthermore the very first process as by the PMBoK Guide is “Develop Project Charter”, correct? … of course …

Yes, but as you also may know there are mostly some additional Steps before you can start creating the Project Charter. Therefore we will have some additional artefacts that we do support with MP4PM and “Knowing the Sponsor” is the very first of them.

We have done a version 1.0 already, but of course like the complete “MP4PM” framework this deliverable will be continuously improved and developed further.

If you want to participate in this development, please feel free to add your valuable inputs in the corresponding discussion thread at the end of this posting. Any feedback is highly appreciated.

You can access an interactive online version of the “Knowing your Sponsor” map here (or just by clicking on the picture above):

http://www.projectmanagement.plus/mp4pmmaps/1.1.1%20MP4PM%20Knowing%20Your%20Project%20Sponsor

Please use this version for review only.


If you want to use the map and/or work with it, then please download it from here:

http://projectmanagement.plus/en/mp4pm/mp4pm-downloads

For downloading the map/files you need to be logged in at www.projectmanagement.plus . If you do not want to create a user account there, then just write me a private message here and I will provide you the files.

“Knowing your Sponsor” is not only available as .mmap (what is the MindManager file format, but could also be opened with Xmind for instance), it is also provided in several other formats like the usual MS Office formats for instance (all included in the download package!).

Please try out and let us know what you thinking of it.

In our next blog we will introduce you the next “MP4PM” features and may be we will talking already about the next deliverable what is actually work in progress.

Until next time ... ;)

=====================================================

If you want to contribute to the map please refer to the following discussion threads; we have created one discussion thread for each branch in the map for a better overview:

"Knowing your Sponsor" - Questions about "Setting Expectations"


"Knowing your Sponsor" - Questions for "Understanding your working relationship"


"Knowing your Sponsor" - Questions about "Tradeoffs"


"Knowing your Sponsor" - Questions about "Schedule and Budget Expectations"


"Knowing your Sponsor" - Questions about "Business Outcome"


"Knowing your Sponsor" - Questions about "Stakeholders"


"Knowing your SpPonsor" - Questions about "Project Context"


"Knowing your SpPonsor" - Questions about "Quality and Scope"

Posted on: December 06, 2016 10:03 AM | Permalink | Comments (20)

Mind Mapping® for project management – an overview

Soon we will start publishing our new, PMBoK guide aligned and Mind Mapping® based project management framework "MP4PM".

And to kick this off we want to first look at the facts why Mind Mapping® in general is a great tool to gather, organize and transfer information and how it could be a help especially in project management efforts by utilizing Mind Mapping® software.

Mind Mapping® is a way of visually representing ideas and information. Just as geographical maps help people see where they’re going and help them anticipate and avoid obstacles, Mind Maps® let people lay out ideas and connect information in a way that helps identify dependencies, connections, and risks.

Mind Mapping® is a powerful technique and the advantages of Mind Maps® are many:

  • The relative importance of each idea is clearly indicated by how near it is to the center, which clearly features the main idea.
  • The links between key concepts will be immediately obvious from their proximity and connection to one another. The brain works primarily with key concepts that it links and integrates. Mind Maps® work in the same way, meaning that recall and review will be faster and more effective.
  • The nature of the Mind Map® structure allows for the easy addition of new information.
  • Each Mind Map® has its own unique pattern, which further aids recall.
  • The open-ended nature of the Mind Map® is a great aid to creativity, allowing the brain to make new and exciting connections with ease.
  • With practice, you'll find Mind Maps® help you to be your best in every thinking situation.
 
 
Uses Benefits
Learning
  • Reduce those 'tons of work'.
  • Feel good about study, revision and exams.
  • Have confidence in your learning abilities
Overviewing
  • See the whole picture, the global view, at once.
  • Understand the links and connections
Concentrating
  • Focus on the task for better results
  • Using all your cortical skills attracts your attention
Memorising
  • Easy recall
  • 'See' the information in your mind's eye
Organising
  • Easy recall
  • Be on top of all the details for parties, holidays, projects or any other subject
Presenting
  • Speeches are clear, relaxed and alive. You can be at your best
Communicating
  • In all forms with clarity and conciseness
Meetings
  • From planning to agenda, to chairing, to taking the minutes...the jobs are completed with speed and efficiency
Training
  • From preparation to presentation, they make the job easier and much faster
Thinking
  • Having a method to analyze thoughts - almost a 'way station' for them
Negotiating
  • All issues, your position and maneuverability on one sheet
Brain Blooming
  • The new brain-storming in which more thoughts are generated and appropriately assessed.

 

By looking at those use cases and benefits you might think “well, there are a lot of them appearing in project management also, right?” and yes, there are. Since project management is all about gathering information and work with them and also about communication, Mind Mapping® can be utilized for this actions in a great way. But then you may think “well, but all this paper work … and if it is written down, how to reorganize the information if necessary?" (and it will be, right?).


This is when software tools comes in place; software tools which are basing on the Mind Mapping® principles. Using such Mind Mapping® tools has the following six key benefits:

 

PROFESSIONAL MIND MAPPING SOFTWARE ...

-         LET PEOPLE WORK THE WAY THEY THINK

With professional Mind Mapping® software, you can brainstorm and capture ideas in freeform, and then add structure and depth. Drag-and-drop editing and markers let you apply order, connect ideas, and group concepts into themes. Built-in templates often make it easy to bring clarity to important projects, and completed maps give you a more effective way to communicate.

-         REDUCES INFORMATION OVERLOAD

Professional Mind Mapping® software lets you organize ideas and information in a single view so you can see connections and draw conclusions quickly. It’s easy to assemble content-rich information maps with attachments and links that let you process information without having to jump between different apps and browsers. You maybe even can even import tasks, email, and contacts from Microsoft Outlook to Mind Maps® to better organize your work life.

-         HELPS STRUCTURE BUSINESS, STRATEGIC & PROJECT PLANS

Professional Mind Mapping® software provides deep capabilities for organizing information to drive critical business processes and decision-making. More advanced features can include Guided Brainstorming tools, 2x2 analysis views, budgeting and forecasting tools, and numerous project management features where we look into in detail later on.

-         IMPROVES COMMUNICATION

Professional Mind Mapping® software visual format lets you show the big picture and then drill down to display details as needed, all in a single view. Improve meetings by quickly capturing discussion notes and follow-up action items in context. Use priority markers, symbols, and embedded images to highlight the most important points.

-         WORKS WITH YOUR EXISTING TOOLS

Professional Mind Mapping® software is integrated with Microsoft and Apple productivity apps, including MS Word, MS PowerPoint, MS Excel, MS Outlook, MS Project, and Apple Keynote and Pages. Individuals can map out their work in the professional Mind Mapping® software, and then publish final reports and proposals in the most appropriate format.

-         CAN BE USED ACROSS THE ORGANIZATION

Professional Mind Mapping® software may have an enterprise version which extends the value offering integration with Microsoft SharePoint to enable collective information management and collaboration. With the Enterprise Version people across the organization can use professional Mind Mapping® software intuitive visual frame - work to capture and organize information, then share editable maps so teams can solve problems, prioritize strategies, plan projects, and process information together.

After looking at the Mind Mapping® benefits in general and the advantages of using Mind Mapping® software especially we will know focus on the specific benefits of using the combination of them applied to project management:

Successful project management depends on effective management of expectations and commitments. Mind Mapping® software helps you keep teams in alignment on the decisions and tradeoffs that determine if a project will meet goals and deadlines. Create a blueprint for your project by defining goals, prioritizing issues, capturing stakeholder input, and validating requirements—all in one application.
 

  

MIND MAPPING FOR PROJECT MANAGEMENT 

Visualize Goals

Clearly defining goals and prioritizing issues means getting input—and more importantly, buy-in—from the entire team. Mind Maps® give project teams a virtual whiteboard for brainstorming where every idea and concern can be surfaced and cataloged. Mind Maps® help teams think visually so they can quickly lay out deliverables and identify any gaps in the plan.

 

Validate Requirements

Adequately validating requirements is one of the first steps to ensuring project success. Quickly capture stakeholder input in a format that encourages participation. Verify decisions by visually ordering and reordering topics, drilling down to review details, and using priority markers to provoke essential trade-off discussions.

 

Manage Resources

Use Mind Maps® to create detailed process maps to intelligently allocate resources and identify dependencies. Mind Maps® helps everyone involved see the big picture and all the details in context. And if needed, you can export straight to Microsoft Project and other MS Office products and also the independent and high flexible HTML5 format (can be opened by any web browser!)

 

Adjust and Optimize

Quickly make adjustments when schedules and resources change. The task roll-up feature shows the overall impact of changes to assignments and dependencies so that everyone can understand (and respond to) the implications of schedules and budgets. Integrated Gantt charts provide a timeline view of your schedule.

 

Agree on Budgets

 

Create and manage project budgets in the project Mind Map® alongside priorities and schedules—all in one place. Most professional tools have a feature to quickly set up formulas throughout your map and use the formula editor to add more sophisticated calculations. Conduct “what if” analyses by dragging topics into or out of the formula’s range to immediately adjust the calculations.

 

Be Prepared

Most of the professional Mind Mapping® tools (like MindManager or XMind for instance) helps you often get started faster with project map templates and pre-built map topics for creating project charters, plans, status, and timelines. Once you create a project, you can save your working Mind Map® as a custom template to guide future work, reducing the time needed to start your next project.

And this is exactly what we want to provide with our “MP4PM – MindmaPping for project management” initiative. Aligned to PMBoK Guide and covering all of the 47 (5th version) processes and all their related ITTOs!

This will mean that you do not need to build up this project templates on your own; you can use them out of the box or doing some customization related to your own project management processes used in your organization. Tailoring the PMBoK Guide processes for specific project needs becomes very easy this way and even if your company does not rely on PMI’s methodology it still will be very useful (hopefully).

Thank you for taking time reading this first article as a kickoff to the upcoming articles and maybe webinars.

Next time we will introduce our “MP4PM” a bit more in detail and also provide you a “sneak preview” so you can see what to expect in the next weeks, month's and maybe even years. We hope you will like it.

Any feedback is highly appreciated.

 

=======================================

first published here:

http://projectmanagement.plus/en/news/78-ressources/mp4pm/19-mind-mapping-for-project-management-an-overview

 

References:
http://www.buzan.com.au/learning/benefits.html
https://www.mindjet.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/Managing-Projects-with-MindManager-User-Guide.pdf
https://www.mindjet.com/uses/project-management/

 

Posted on: November 28, 2016 03:00 PM | Permalink | Comments (11)

PMBOK® Guide 6th Edition will be released in Q3/2017 - what will change? - UPDATED!

This is an update to my previous postings regarding this topic.

First of all the most important information:

When will PMBOK® Guide Sixth Edition be released?

According to PMI, we can expect the following release dates:

  • Final Release is scheduled for the third quarter of 2017 (July-Sept 2017)

 

When will The PMP Exam change?

The PMP Exam is largely based on the content found in the PMBOK® Guide. The exam changeover from version 5 to 6 is scheduled as follows:

  • PMP Exam update to PMBOK 6 will happen in Q1 of 2018

 

What are the major changes that will happen?

 

Agile and other iterative practices

As some of us already heard there will be some new content to emphasize the importance and relevance of agile and other iterative practices.

Different from previous editions, the PMBOK®Guide –Sixth Edition will contain numerous references to adaptive and iterative practices, including agile. This decision was made in response to the requests of PMIs stakeholders. This content will include:

  • The practices often used in an adaptive environment in the front of each Knowledge Area section (Sections 4–13).
  • An appendix to The Standard for Project Management on agile and other iterative practices.

 

PMI Talent Triangle™

Will the new PMI Talent Triangle™ find its reflection in the upcoming PMBoK Guide Version? Of course!

The PMBOK®Guide –Sixth Edition will contain a new chapter on the role of the project manager which discusses the PMI Talent Triangle™ and the skill sets organizations demand that make project managers more competitive and relevant—technical project management, leadership, and strategic and business management.

 

Key Concepts

Many key concepts addressed in the first three chapters of the PMBOK® Guide are covered, in abbreviated form, in Section I of the Standard. Section II of the Standard contains a description of the project management processes, organized by Process Group, along with their key benefits, inputs and outputs.

 

Processes; Process Groups and Knowledge Areas

The Process Groups remain the same in the Sixth Edition, although two Knowledge Areas have new names:

Project Time Management is now Project Schedule Management, emphasizing the importance of scheduling in project management. This aligns with PMI’s Practice Standard for Scheduling.
And Project Human Resource Management is now Project Resource Management. We discuss both team resources and physical resources in the processes of this Knowledge Area.

There are three new processes in the Sixth Edition:


  • Manage Project Knowledge is part of the Executing Process Group and Project Integration Management knowledge area.
  • Implement Risk Responses is part of the Executing Process Group and Project Risk Management knowledge area.
  • Control Resources is part of the Monitoring and Controlling Process Group and Project Resource Management knowledge area.

Estimate Activity Resources is still part of the Planning Process Group, but it is associated with Project Resource Management processes instead of Project Schedule Management processes.

Since there will be one process be deleted - "Close Procurements" process has been removed. Its functionality has been consolidated into the "Close Project or Phase” Process - the total number of processes will count up from actually 47 to 49!

In addition, some processes have different names. For example, to align with research showing that project management is more about facilitating and managing than controlling, several processes are shifted from a Control function to a Monitor function. In other cases, the process name was aligned with the intent of the process. The chart below identifies the overall name changes.

 

PMBOK 5th Edition

PMBOK 6th Edition

Perform Quality Assurance

Manage Quality

Plan Human Resource Management

Plan Resource Management

Acquire Project Team Acquire Resources

Control Communications

Monitor Communications

Control Risks

Monitor Risks

Plan Stakeholder Management

Plan Stakeholder Engagement

Control Stakeholder Engagement

Monitor Stakeholder Engagement

 

The function of the Close Procurement process has now been captured within Control Procurements and Close Project or Phase. Research shows that few project managers have the authority to formally and legally close a contract. Project managers are responsible to determine that work is complete, records indexed and archived, and responsibilities transferred appropriately. Thus, they have now included work associated with Close Procurements within the aforementioned processes.

 

Project Management Plan Components and Project Documents

Please note the following changes to the project management plan components and project documents:

  • The components of the project management plan that are inputs to a process, or that are updated as outputs from a process, are not listed individually in the inputs or outputs. Rather, the project management plan is the input and project management plan updates is the output.
  • Beneath the input/output table, a list of potential project management plan components is identified. However, the components of the project management plan that will be inputs or updated depends on the needs of the project.
  • Project documents are listed as an input and project documents updates is listed as an output, as appropriate. Beneath the input/output table there is a list of potential project  documents that may be inputs, or may be updated as an output. The needs of the project will determine the actual project documents that should be inputs or updated as an output.

 

additional Changes (as known yet):

Chapters Re-alignment:

There will be chapters re-alignment in Chapters 1 to 3. The information in Chapter 1 to 3 will be combined into 2 chapters and a new Chapter 3 will be devoted to “The Role of the Project Manager” where many aspects of the Project Manager’s role will be mapped to the PMI Talent Triangle.

 

Process Tailoring:
Which means analyzing the project to determine how much emphasis to put on each process (based on the scope & size of the project).

 

“Ongoing” (continuously executing) vs. "Non-ongoing processes”:

There will be various notations throughout the new PMBOK differentiating between processes which are “Ongoing” (continuously executing) vs. "Non-ongoing processes.” This concept will be emphasized for the first time in PMBOK Guide Sixth Edition.

 

"Project Scope vs Product Scope":
concept will also be emphasized for the first time in PMBOK Guide Sixth Edition.

 

"Earned Value tool kit":
supported by the PMBOK will now include “Earned Schedule Management".

 

Communication:
There will be distinction between "Communication" (as in communicating between two people) and "Communications" (artifacts, such as published emails).

 

"Escalate Responses":
The new strategy, “Escalate Responses” provides for a PM escalating a risk to the appropriate party so that the risk is no longer his/her responsibility. Once escalated, the PM will now have the option of either:

a) Removing the risk from the project’s risk register if desired, or

b) Keeping it in the risk register, but classifying it as “Escalated/Assigned To.”

 

"Lessons Learned Register as new ITTO:
The new Lessons Learned Register is now part of the set of ITTOs. Project Managers will now be encouraged to update on a frequent basis (not just at the end of the project). Updates can be done at any time throughout the project, especially at the end of project phases.

 

New Appendix Information:

  • Summary of Key Concepts
  • Summary of Tailoring Considerations
  • Summary of Tools & Techniques
  • Adaptive & Iterative Approaches

 

This is what we know about the upcoming changes yet. There may be additional changes until the final version will be released.

We will inform you accordingly.

 


first published @ projectmanagement.plus

Posted on: October 26, 2016 09:19 AM | Permalink | Comments (11)
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