The Big Time

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Managing any project successfully is all about Team Work combined with years of Accrued Expertise. It is an asset to have an educational background that compliments your field of expertise but "education" without "experience" is like an "arrow" without a "bow." You can never make a perfect shot with a temporary arrow unless you have a permanent bow called: "Life's Experience." Remember, you can never teach experience but you can always teach from experience.

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Project Management for Development Professionals

PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP)®

PMI Schedueling Professional (PMI-SP)®

The Added Value of Certifications

Scrum & Personal Professional Development

Project Management for Development Professionals

A while ago, through a colleague of mine, I came across some very interesting certifications that are somehow specific to Project Management for Development Projects. I thought of sharing this with the community as it can add value especially for those who are considering working with NGO's in the future on projects in developing countries or those who would like to gain knowledge about what is unique about managing Development Projects. I personally found some interesting areas such as:

  1. Project Justification Management 
  2. Project Closure or Transition 
  3. How development projects look beyond the outputs of a project moving to the outcomes and then long terms goal. 
  4. The use of some agile concepts blended with the traditional project management approach.

You can find info about those certifications at PM4NGOS - Those certifications are administered through APMG International

There are currently three certifications offered: 

  • Program Management for Development Professionals (PgMD Pro 1) 
  • Project Management for Development Professionals (PMD Pro 1) 
  • Project Management for Development Professionals (PMD Pro 2) 

Some quick tips and facts to consider: 

  1. You can do the exams online - Each exam is 75 Multiple Choice Questions and you have 3 Hours to complete the exam. 
  2. Those certifications do not expire. 
  3. No course is required. Just like the scrum.org, there is a study guide and you can do self-study. The exams are not easy especially the level 2 exams. 
  4. Exams fees are very reasonable.

I connected with PMI with regards to those certifications and they were added to pm.com certification list under APMG International so if you go to Edit Profile then Certifications, you will see those listed there. 

It would be great to see your feedback and thoughts - Good Luck to all Aspirants ! 

 

Posted on: July 24, 2018 02:20 PM | Permalink | Comments (22)

PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP)®

 

I am glad to announce that I passed the PMI-ACP Exam with Above Target rating. It was an interesting journey and very different than any of the other certifications. I thought to share my journey so that future aspirants can benefit from it. 

Study Plan

  • ACP Exam Prep Book by Mike Griffiths: Excellent reference that will help you fully understand every single detail related to the exam and agile projects. I consider this like the PMBOK, a great reference for Agile so I am positive I will always refer to it in the future. 
  • Agile Practice Guide by PMI: Not very detailed but contains some good information about process tailoring, pain points and their trouble shooting, flow based vs. iteration based agile. 
  • Exam Content Outline: Very Important to go through it in details as it might help you get some clues in the exam. 

Personally, I believe Mike's book is a must to pass the exam. Read Mike's book twice, the agile guide as well and highlight the most important items in addition to the exam outline. 

  • Simulation Exams: Solved simulation exams (Whizlab, PM Prepcast & RMC Fast Track). They were all helpful but the exam is way different so do not rely on those simulation exams. They might help you though with eliminating some wrong answers. 

Exam Experience

I am going to talk about my personal exam experience (Without going into details or specific questions):

  • The level of difficulty could be easily comparable with PMP, if not more difficult. Although the exam was very tough but PMI did a great job putting this pool of questions together. 
  • You do not need to memorize anything at all. All the exam was scenario based questions some of which are short, others were very lengthy (At least 40%). Forget about memorizing - Some might find it hard to believe but it is the truth. 
  • The exam tests your understanding of agile very deeply beyond any text book. You need to ensure you fully understand agile and have an agile mindset. 
  • The language of the questions and answers is not easy at all. You might end up reading the question and answers 3 times. 
  • It is the first time I almost run out of time. I finished the last question 10 minutes before the end of the 3 hours and then went and reviewed some of the questions I marked but could not go through all of them again. Watch your time - Some would think that 3 Hours for 120 Questions is a lot but trust me, it is not. 
  • You will find it easy to eliminate two answers but very difficult to chose between the remaining two. You need to deeply think and adopt the agile mindset to properly get to a conclusion in terms of which choice is the best. 

Good Luck to all future Aspirants ! 

Posted on: July 10, 2018 02:10 AM | Permalink | Comments (43)

PMI Risk Management Professional (PMI-RMP)

I passed the RMP exam on March 13, 2018 from the first attempt with Above Target in all Domains and would like to share with you my RMP Adventure as it might be helpful for new apirants who are preparing to sit for the exam. 

How did I study ? 

1- Study Time: 2 - 4 hours daily (6 Days a week) for 1.5 Months. 
2- References: PMBOK 5th Edition and Rita's Prep Exam 8th Edition Updated (Read through all chapters with a concentration and detailed study of Risk, Communication & Stakeholder Management Knowledge Areas).
3- Read in details the Practice Standard of Risk Management along with Appendix D. 
4- Reviewed some external articles about specific topics like Monte Carlo & Latin Hyper Cube. 
5- Purchased a simulation exam on Udemy & I also registered on PMSTAR.COM for their eSim and both were good quality questions and contained some good ideas. 

How was the Exam ? 

I can only discuss the exam in general without going into details or specifics as it is against the Code of Ethics: 


1- The Exam was much harder than I anticipated: I thought I was over prepared but I actually was rightly prepared. 

2- Lots of lengthy and medium length situational and scenario based questions. 

3- The exam definitely tests your knowledge and experience beyond any text book. 


4- I finished the exam in 3 Hrs and I was reasonably fast between reading, analyzing and answering.

What is my advise ? 

Study very well and make sure you understand every single aspect properly and how to do it in real life. If you are experienced, you should rely 60% on your studying and 40% on your expertise in applying those skills in real life and the EXAM. 

What is my Point of View ? 

Finding the exam to be difficult is a positive thing that PMI made the exam that way so that it can maintain the value of this certification and only people who really deserve it and have the required skill level can earn it. I believe this is a plus for everyone who is certified as when you mention you are a PMI-RMP certified, people will react "Oh Wow, Great" which makes you feel proud and feel the value of this certification if compared to people saying : "Oh everyone can get it, it is easy".


I am glad that I have finally earned this certification, glad to be part of this community and I wish all the best of luck to all future candidates.

Always Remember: Such Adventures are definitely worth taking ! 

Posted on: March 15, 2018 07:44 PM | Permalink | Comments (24)

Happy New Year 2018 !

On Behalf of all of our Project Management Team at Field & Marten Associates, I would like to wish you all in this community and your loved ones a Blessed Merry Christmas & Prosperous New Year 2018.

Years go by fast so may this year & all the coming years be full of Great Expectations, Good Health & Collaborative Working Relationships. 

It was another great year being part of this growing community. It was full of challenges, learning opportunities and contributions. I look forward for another year full of achievements & giving. 

Happy Holidays Everyone ! 

 

 

May 

Year.

Posted on: December 21, 2017 03:24 PM | Permalink | Comments (12)

Teamwork Works !

We were interviewed for a podcast by M Powered Strategies a while back and now it is online - The main subject was about Teamwork (Below is the link): 

Influencers Part V: Teamwork !

What is your personal experience with Teamwork and what strategies proved to enhance teamwork in your projects ?

Posted on: June 26, 2017 02:42 PM | Permalink | Comments (8)
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