Monday, April 05, 2021

PMP Success Story: Smart Hard Work is the Only Shortcut to Success

By Vishwa Deepak Tiwari, PMP, P2P



Introduction

Being in the industry for a long time, as I’ve seen, the Project Management Professional (PMP®) certification is the only program in project management studies that is recognized and revered worldwide. I’d say, it’s better than Master of Business Administration (MBA), especially in project management!

This inspired to go for this certification program and pursue this certification. 


PMP Coaching Experience

I started my journey with PMP as I was struggling in my role to deliver projects. My manager recommended to attend a PMP training.

I joined the classroom session at Bangalore, India and I was fortunate to have found Mr. Satya Narayan Dash. I’m thankful that I got to learn from the legend of this domain. His experience as a PMP trainer is unmatched.

The training was like a workshop (very hands-on) where I got to learn and apply the knowledge in most intuitive way possible. Coming from a technical background, it was a make or break situation for me. Thanks to his training approach, I found it quite engaging and decided to go ahead with the PMP credential. 

The process and knowledge chart (all 49 processes interacting with each other in a single chart on the whiteboard) built by Satya was so easy to understand. 

It helped me to remember them in no time.

However, things didn’t quite work out though as I got personal priorities and commitment in hand. It took me quite some time to get back and prepare seriously.  

Own Study

It has been quite some time post my classroom session. Hence, I had to start from scratch. I committed two months to this endeavour and my only resources were all emails from Satya and his book: I Want To Be A PMP.

I was on a crash course due to personal issues and therefore I had to give almost 8 hours a day for my studies. My goal was to read Satya’s book and then study the PMBOK® guide, along with the Agile Practice Guide (APG). But I never got chance to read the PMBOK guide or APG at all.

Book Review - I Want To Be A PMP

When I bought Live Lessons from Satya, he was kind enough to give me his book for free with this purchase. I guess he saw my commitment and zeal to learn, and I’m happy today that he isn’t disappointed!

I couldn’t get the time to go through the video lessons, a thorough one. The course expires in 6 months after its purchase. As noted earlier, I had other personal commitments and hence, could not pursue with it further. But I had the book, I Want To Be A PMP, from him for the lifetime and that came as a great gift.

The book is written in simplest way possible and the best part is the Yogic Tips, which are so helpful while doing revisions. I don’t think any book can be so up to date. Thanks to Satya for keeping it online and always updating it for our help. 

The practice questions written by Satya are amazing. These questions are not only helpful in reviewing the lessons, but I found them also to be the only questions coming close to the analytical challenges posed by the real PMP exam set. 

It may sound like I’m marketing for Satya, but believe me that after scoring ‘Above Target’ in PMP exam and clearing it in first attempt, I don’t have to do it anymore unless I really feel something outstanding that brought me this day.

Other Study Material Used

I tried few other mock questions, brain-dumps and purchased questions with guaranteed pass rates. 

SORRY TO DISAPPOINT YOU, but all of them are fake and nowhere close to the actual PMP exam experience. Be clear on one thing that PMI safeguards their exam bank like anything, the exam bank pool is massive and updated frequently. So, you cannot get real questions leaked, no chance!

I also tried some free online mock questions from PM Prepcast and other sites. But all of them were total waste of time. The worst part is that they have wrong answers to some questions, and they are justifying them as well!

Actually, you don’t need such questions anyways. If your understanding is solid, then you can go for the exam. The time in the exam is very limited and you will have never enough time to read too much to understand what has been asked. I wish to have one mock exam that is accurate from these sources and helps in practicing for the time. 

For those who are interested in giving the exam now, I believe that PMI has taken a leap. Their exam bank has got complete overhaul after 2nd January, 2021. The exam guidelines say that 50% questions will be from predictive and 50% from Hybrid or Agile. But I got almost 70% of Hybrid and Agile questions. 

Remember to read the Earned Value Management (EVM) for Agile projects well. I faced questions on it in the exam.

PMP Exam Experience

I scheduled for Online Proctored Exam due to Covid19 posing new challenges. Due to kids at home, I had to take midnight slot, which I’d discourage people to do unless you have no other option. It was tough to concentrate while feeling sleepy.

I struggled due to the environment factors (using PMI’s language – Enterprise Environmental Factors!) and not having enough mock exam practices. I could only attempt 178 out of 180 questions. 

Here is my experience with the actual PMP exam questions:

  • Questions are analytical and PMI uses psychometric analysis with all answers looking legitimate. In a way it’s good, because if you really understood a concept, then the answer will flash as you go through the question.
  • About 10-12 questions were multiple response questions (different from multiple-choice) with more than two answers to select sometimes.
  • There was hardly any direct question, except one in my case. Most of them were situational.
  • There were about 5-6 drag and drop questions and I found them to be easy comparatively.
  • I got only 3 mathematical questions and they were easy as well. However, it is important to remember all formulas by heart because you don’t know what’s your luck! PMP exam is not a test of your luck – not even from a thousand mile.


Suggestions for PMP Aspirants

Dos 

  • Read the book, I Want To Be A PMP thoroughly and understand the concepts.
  • Memorize the formulas
  • Create your own process chart couple of times to be able to recall the flow of the 49 processes across the 5 process groups and 10 knowledge areas.
  • Focus more on the Agile aspects. Read the Agile Practice Guide, if you can. I only read the book. 
  • Read other resources related to Agile, if possible.

Don’ts

  • Don’t try to memorize everything, except for the formulas.
  • No need to memorize all the ITTOs; except for a few important ones and mostly to be able to answer the “WHYs”.
  • Don’t go online searching for real or even mock-up exams. I didn’t find anything of value. Quality is always better than quantity.

Conclusion

I’d say the journey to achieve the credential has been exciting, exhaustive, but so very satisfying in the end! 

I’d however advise people not go for this exam unless they are really in project management or genuinely interested to move into this domain. 

Brief Profile: 

Vishwa Deepak Tiwari, PMP, P2P

Principal Learning Consultant,
Norton LifeLock (previously known as Symantec Corp.)

 


Saturday, April 03, 2021

RMP 30 Contact Hours Online Course – Full Money Back Guarantee





I am pleased to announce the availability of the 30 Contact Hours Course for Risk Management Professional (RMP®) examination from Project Management Institute (PMI®):


RMP 30 CONTACT HOURS ONLINE COURSE

It’s a complete video course and comes with full money back guarantee.

This course has been requested by many aspiring Risk Management Professionals (RMPs) in the last few months. They want my learn from my teachings or join my sessions as they see a number of RMP success stories. But, it’s not always feasible considering geographical and time-zone gaps. Hence, this course.

Also, with COVID-19 pandemic, it’s needless to say that Risk Management will be in focus and will be continued to be emphasized in the future. There has been an increased interest in Risk Management practices. This is another reason for launching this course.

Many aspiring RMPs have requested for this video course after purchasing my RMP book, I Want To Be A RMPIndeed, videos take much less time to prepare compared to books as you will be listening and then practicing the questions. I was speaking with a successful RMP few days before, who prepared with my book and he felt this course would have cut his preparation time by half.

This course is a complete reflection of my teachings on Risk Management - classroom, in-house for special cases or personal, which have created many successful RMPs. 

This contact-hours online course has many advantages, which are not possible to cover in a few days of classroom (or even personal) training, e.g.,

  1. This course’s primary format is video, which makes learning easy.
  2. You can replay as many times as you want till you get a grasp on the concepts.
  3. It has over 100s of practice questions.
  4. It has two full-length RMP Exam Question Sets.
  5. You have to take an end course assessment of 50 questions.
    . . . 
    . . . , among many others.
All of these won’t be possible or feasible in a 3- or 4-day classroom session.

How to Claim RMP 30 Contact Hours, when not an ATP or REP?
One of the biggest misconceptions about PMI-RMP’s 30 Contact Hours program is this: You have to mandatorily get training from an Authorized Training Partner (A.T.P) or Registered Education Provider (R.E.P). Nothing can be further from the truth.

In fact, the Handbook for PMI-RMP exam has long noted this (a direct snippet)



Reference: PMI-RMP Certification Handbook, Section: "PMI-RMP Application & Payment", Page 8 (source: pmi.org)
PMI-RMP Hand Book – Link to Check   

As you can clearly see, only ATP or REP can provide 30-contact hours is just NOT true. Risk Management Education Requirements can be provided by training companies or consultants, distance e-Learning companies, among many others.

But some mislead, sometimes knowingly! You should always go with the course, which gives you the highest possible value and highest possible chance of success. Of course, you also have to put in the needed effort. There is no short-cut for the RMP exam. It's not an easy exam.

Money you pay for the course is not actually the value, that's just the cost you pay. You may go for a cheap course - available in abundance in the market! But in the long run, it will prove costly for you. I've seen such cases. Actual value is what you learn, how you learn and how you remember the concepts. 

With this course, you will get the mandatory 30-contact hours, a pre-requisite to appear for the RMP examination. This course comes with an end course assessment of 50 questions.


Top 10 Features: RMP 30 Contact Hours Online Course
  1. Total Video Duration: 15 hours (14h 54m 45s)
  2. Number of Videos: 250
  3. Number of Lessons: 14
  4. Total Number of Questions: 400+
  5. Number of Full-Length Question Sets: 2 (total = 370 Questions)
  6. A number of lesson-end practice questions
  7. Coverage of advanced concepts such as Simulations, DTA, Branching etc.
  8. End Course Assessment: Detailed end course assessment with 50 questions.
  9. Tips and Tricks: 100s of Tips throughout the lessons
  10. Content: Simple content and highly interactive videos

Course Breakdown: RMP 30 Contact Hours Online Course
  • Lesson - 1 Welcome (7 videos): 12m 40s [12 minutes 40 seconds]
  • Lesson 2 - Introduction (9 videos): 22m 28s
  • Lesson 3 - Fundamentals of Risk Management (23 videos): 1hr 18m 10s
  • Lesson 4 - Risk Management Framework and Life Cycle (18 videos): 1hr 00m 41s
  • Lesson 5 - Risk Management and Other Knowledge Areas (49 videos): 3h 26m 26s
  • Lesson 6 - Risk Management Planning (15 videos): 51m 38s
  • Lesson 7 - Risk Identification (23 videos): 1h 21m 16s
  • Lesson 8 - Qualitative Risk Analysis (20 videos): 1h 17m 21s
  • Lesson 9 - Quantitative Risk Analysis (26 videos): 1h 41m 58s
  • Lesson 10 - Risk Response Planning (24 videos): 1h 28m 09s
  • Lesson 11 - Risk Response Implementation (16 videos): 48m 25s
  • Lesson 12 - Risk Monitoring (18 videos): 1h 05m 28s
  • Lesson 13 - 2 Full Length Question and Answer Sets (340 Q&As)
  • Lesson 14 – Final Lesson – RMP 30 Contact Hours (2 videos): 5m 24s

The details on it are also available available at:
https://www.managementyogi.com/p/rmp-30-contact-hours-online-course.html

What is Full Money Back Guarantee for RMP 30 Contact Hours Course?


There are no little tricks, such as – “terms and conditions apply”, “** conditions apply”, “guarantee not applicable if you have seen 15% of the course”, “give all 3 attempts or we will refund your money” etc., as you would have seen in many places.
What you see and reading here is what you get.

The premise is simple.
Go through the complete course for 15 days. 100% video content of this course will be available to you.
If you don’t like the course, I’ll refund your full money.


You can watch more on money back guarantee in this video [duration - 1m: 56s]. It also informs on the goal, objective and motto of this course.



Note:
You can also evaluate the videos before paying any money. Twenty-five (25) videos will be available for your evaluation, even before your purchase.


Applicability and Validity
  • RMP Latest Exam (2021): Risk Management Standards and Practices Guides, PMBOK Guide, 6th Edition
  • Course Duration – 6 months from the date of purchase
  • Price - $ 189 / Rs 12,849 (for 6 months)
  • Payment - paypal.me/managementyogi
    (Enter the amount; Invoice will be generated after payment)
    OR, you can pay via Bank Transfer or Payment. For this, please send a mail to managementyogi@gmail.com to get account the details.
  • Available since - April, 2021
  • Primary Format - Video
  • Course Extension - As per your need.
    (price calculation will be pro-rata)
  • Status – Available
    (accessible via laptop/desktop)

Detailed Course Breakdown
The detailed course breakdown is shown below. It details on the hours of learning, number of videos and practice questions, along with various exercise details. You can scroll to see the full content.




If you want to buy or have any other question, please send an email to managementyogi@gmail.com.

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Top 11 Changes: New PMP 2021 Exam and Beyond

 

The PMP exam has changed from January, 02, 2021. There are still a number of misconceptions about the exam and how it has changed. This I came to know as I interact frequently with PMP aspirants. 

A lot of panic, rumors and fear-mongering are being spread and it’s informed that the PMP exam has become tougher! The exam has not become tougher, but the coverage area has increased. If you have REALLY understood the content for the previous version of the exam (with its brief Agile content from the PMBOK), then this version won’t be difficult. The PMP credential is very much achievable. Nevertheless, you do have to put in the needed effort. 

Here are the top 11 changes for the new PMP exam. The content and the final video towards the end of this article are taken from:

PMP Live Lessons – Guaranteed Pass or Your Money Back  

Exhaustive set of videos are available as part of the PMP Live Lessons.

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Change – 1: Reduced Number of Questions

Earlier, the exam had 200 questions, out of which 175 were scored ones and 25 were unscored. This has changed.

There will be 180 questions now, with 175 scored and 5 unscored ones. Do note that only the unscored ones’ number has changed, not the scored ones.

I get this question many times:
How to know the scored questions?

You can’t. For you as an exam taker, there is no way to know which one is scored or unscored. Hence, like the previous exam, take the new exam with full question-set in mind, i.e., take it like a single 180 question-set.

Change – 2: Reduced Exam Duration

Earlier, the exam had 4 hours (or 240 minutes) duration. Now, the exam will be of 3 hours, 50 minutes (230 minutes) duration. 


In other words, the exam is actually giving you more time now for every question.

So, from this perspective, one can say you have a higher chance of scoring well in the new exam. 

Change – 3: Changed Performance Domains or Exam Domains

Earlier, there were 5 performance domains:

  • Initiating
  • Planning
  • Executing
  • Monitoring and Controlling
  • Closing 

Now, there are 3 performance domains:

  • People
  • Process
  • Business Environment

These performance domains are mentioned on the exam content outline (ECO), which sets the blueprint for the exam. It tells the domains, the tasks and associated enablers for the exam.

However, the theory part of these domains will be from the PMBOK Guide, 6th edition, the Agile Practice Guide (APG) and other reference books, from which few questions can come. 

Change – 4: Question Segregation (Predictive Vs. Agile or Hybrid)

In the previous version of the exam, there were Agile questions. The PMBOK guide covers almost all Agile concepts, though briefly. 

Earlier, some PMPs have mentioned NO Agile questions at all as this success story tells:

Some PMPs have written that they received Agile questions, for example, FEW Agile questions have been mentioned:

Also, in some cases, a NUMBER of Agile questions are mentioned. In the below success story, the PMP has informed about 15 Agile questions in the exam.

For the new exam, it’s very clear. Now, in the new PMP exam 2021, it is explicitly mentioned that:

  • 50% questions will be in Predictive mode, which is basically a project being executed in sequence of phases.
    Hence, out of 180 questions, 90 questions will be in predictive mode.
  • 50% questions will be Agile/Adaptive or Hybrid mode: Agile projects are both iterative and incremental. Hybrid projects will be sitting in between predictive and adaptive modes with the end-result being non-Agile.
    The remaining 90 questions will be in Agile/Hybrid mode.

Change – 5: Percent Distribution of Questions 

Below are the topic areas or domains, with the percentage of questions expected from each domain. The number of questions from each performance domain shows the proportions. The PMP exam remains pretty close to it, but you can expect a few variations.

As you can see the highest emphasis is on the “Process” domainwhich is fully covered by the PMBOK guide. For the “People” domain, you have to refer to the PMBOK guide, APG and some other minor references. For the “Business Environment” domain, again the previous mentioned references will be needed along with a few others. 

Change – 6: Reduced Number of Tasks 

Earlier, across the 5 domains from Initiating to Closing, there were 42 tasks. Now in the new exam, you have 35 tasks

These tasks map to various processes, knowledge areas, ITTOs of the PMBOK guide – in particular the process part which has the highest number of questions and tasks. 

Change – 7: Tasks with Enablers 

Every task now comes with multiple enablers. Earlier, it was not the case. The sequence is this:

  • Every domain contains a set of tasks.
  • Every task contains a set of enablers.

In total, there are:

  • 3 Domains – People, Process and Business Environment 
  • 35 Tasks – People (14 tasks), Process (17 tasks), Business Environment (4 tasks)
  • 133 Enablers – People (53), Process (61) and Business Environment (19)

Change – 8: Exam Question Styles

Earlier, the exam had only multi-choice questions. Now, you have a variety of questions. 

  • Multiple choice questions with ONLY ONE answer.
    There will be 4 choices with radio buttons. Only one answer will be correct.
  • Drag and Drop questions.
    Drag from left and drop on the right.
  • Hot-spot questions.
    Select the area in a graph or table depending on the situation.
  • Multiple response questions with MORE THAN ONE correct answer.
    There will be more than 4 choices with check boxes. More than one answer can be correct.
  • Fill-in the blanks questions.
    Questions will be there with empty “___________” lines. And you have to fill in the blanks.

Change – 9: Changed Filling of PMP Application forms 

This is not exactly a new change, but has happened before January 02, 2021. However, many candidates may miss this part. Currently, the exam process has been greatly simplified. 

You don’t have to fill-up your projects in hours, but overall in months. In writings (PMP book) and video, I mention it’s a Triple-E (EEE) approach.

  • E = Education, where you have to mention your academic qualifications.
  • E = Experience, where you have to mention your work experience. 
  • E = Exam Details, where you provide the exam related information, e.g., if you have any special need.

Change – 10: Exam Score Report

Exam score report will be across 3 exam domains of People, Process and Business Environment. Your exam score will look like the sample shown below.

As shown above, you will be rated in every domain and rating will be one out of four performance rating categories. 

Change – 11: Multiple Reference Guides and Books

While the PMBOK Guide, latest edition remains the main reference, there are other reference guides such as Agile Practice Guide (APG) and other books.

Hence, you should have a material which encompasses all the needed content. Though almost every provider claims to have such a material, in reality, VERY FEW actually do.

Go with the course from a provider, who is genuinely interested in your success and invested in your success.

Your major sources of questions will be from the PMBOK guide and the Agile Practice Guide (APG).

Video – Exam Change Highlights 

The below video captures the change highlights in just over 6 minutes. You can plug-in your earphones and listen to quickly know the PMP exam changes. [Duration: 6m:21s]

The complete video set with full discussion on the changes and also detailed coverage on the new exam are part of PMP Live Lessons.



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Conclusion

Of course, above all, you have to know the content well and prepare thoroughly. The exam does test your project management knowledge thoroughly and the coverage area is quite vast. 

And, as I’ve frequently noted: Do NOT jump into practice questions immediately, like many do. You won’t get much value out of it, though you may pass. First understand the concepts well and then take high-quality mock exam questions. With this you not only has a high chance of being a PMP, but you also understand and can apply the concepts in your work.

Good quality questions are generally NOT available on the web. On the web, you will have useless questions (will waste your time), unless written by people who have genuinely built many PMP success stories.  

With these noted changes, I believe you are aware of the latest PMP exam and it helps in your journey to be a PMI-PMP.

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