Thursday, August 06, 2015

PMP Success Story - A Short and Exciting Journey

Deepak Madhyastha is a proud PMP today. Deepak contacted me via this blog and requested me to have a look at his profile at LinkedIn for his PMP eligibility, which I confirmed. Few months down the line he was a student in one of my classes – in June 2015! During the session, he was apprehensive – mostly on his experience level and whether he can really be a PMP. Even on the final day he was asking on if he could crack for sure, to which I remember replying “Yes, absolutely, you can!” 

The day he got certified, he informed me. I asked – “How does it feel to be a PMP?” He said about his personal goals and expectations, how he wanted them to be aligned in those months post my confirmation and how he wanted to get it. He was truly happy and excited, which I could feel in his tone.

Below, Deepak has outlined his experience on his journey (italicized). In fact, he has cracked it in just over one month, post the classroom session! 

A solid achievement in a short period of time. Go on and read his unique experience.


I was handling the project without any framework or fundamental knowledge of project management. There were lot hurdle I had faced during the managing the project. So I decided to study something about project management. I was in the assumption that to do PMP certification, I should have 10+ years of professional experiences. But I was wrong.

In fact, when I was searching for prerequisites for PMP, I got this blog Management Yogi. After I read through the couples of blog post like “Seven Steps to Achieve the PMI-PMP Certification”, I got some clarity and confidence about PMP that I have to do this certification to improve my PM skills. Then I commented on that particular blog post to confirm my eligibility with Author of that post and the PMP trainer Satya Narayan Dash. Once he confirmed that I am eligible, I just started thinking only about passing PMP.

PMP Training:
I attended the classroom training to get the needed 35 PDUs. The training material, interactive sessions and real life example helped me understand the topic in depth. The support team from the provider provided excellent service! Especially Mr Anand who helped me whenever I asked for a help or information. Food was good. Surely would recommend the event to others.

In the session, I had an exhaustive understanding on the PMP materials along with 300 sample questions and post that had access to online materials and loads of information about PMP. In the training, I got a broad picture about the project management processes and the exam. It helped me to study accordingly.

Own Study:
From my learning experience I would like to say that key to crack PMP exam is PMBOK and understand Project management processes properly rather than memorizing so many things. In my case exam paper was not much hard, but it was very tricky.

My Study Plan for one and half month and 1 week full time for putting all things together
  • Head First PMP (1 time)
  • PMBOK Guide 5th edition (1 time)
  • PMP Exam Prep: Questions, Answers & Explanations, 2013 Edition by Christopher Scordo
  • Mr. Oliver F. Lehmann questions
  • PMP related videos in Youtube
  • ManagementYogi’s blog
  • Classroom's materials available online
  • Edward Chung’s blog

My PMP Exam Experience:
I took a month and half leave and studied for PMP. I tried to spend at least 4-5 hours daily and 1-2 hours for revision. Couldn't utilize all the weekends, since I used to spend time with friends and family.

I reached the exam center 30 minutes early. Initial formality took some time. The staff were very professional and managed the rush well. Finally was assigned a desk for my exam. Started the exam straight away after the 15 minutes tutorial. Didn't do any dump as I was practicing them daily writing twice for the last few days before exam, so able to recollect without any issue.

Had a target of answering 60 questions per hour. But completed 50 questions in first hour, which made me feel not good. Then completed 120 questions in second hour and completed exam in 3 hour 40 minutes and reviewed all marked questions for next 20 minutes. It is important to keep moving ahead with your best selection. You don't want to spend 5 minutes on a question that would never be marked. Therefore, it's important to spread your time equally. Easier said than done but it is one of the simple key to success. Did the survey that followed, submitted and within a minute, Congratulations appeared on the screen. Mission accomplished. I was given a printout of the result from the center. One proficient, one moderately proficient and 3 below proficient. The exam is not very difficult, however, it's not straight forward too.

Suggestions for PMP Aspirants:
  • Try to understand the basic project management concepts
  • Do refer only one prep book along with PMBOK.
  • Do solve sample questions as much as possible. So that you can fill the gaps.
  • Don’t memorize the ITTO. It’s not necessary. Just understand the concepts behind those.
  • Don’t refer multiple prep books. It may mislead you.
  • Do not underestimate the traffic. Try to be at exam center well before.

It was short and sweet journey compared to others. It took me around 1.5 months. But those 1.5 months, I dedicated only to PMP. Now, I want to implement the PMP concepts in my day today project management activities.

Brief Profile:
I'm Deepak Madhyastha. I have been in the IT industry since last 7 years having diverse experience in the field of Localization and Translation. Currently I'm as Delivery Manager with Vision360 Globalization Services Pvt. Ltd.


Deepak’s online PMP profile is available at PMI’s Online Credential Registry.

I am thankful to Deepak for sharing his experience. I do believe it will enrich others and help them in their quest for PMP.