Wednesday, January 17, 2018

PMP Success Story: Eat, Sleep, and Drink PMP

By Karthik Hongalkar, PMP

I work as a technical lead at Eurofins. In my day to day activities there were lot of questions asked by my manger as what are the new risks, what are the mitigation plans and many other management related question. 

One person informed me to do PMP certification and many discouraged telling it is tough. It hit me hard. I have this bad habit – if someone tells it is tough then I’m game for it. 

After clearing the PMP exam, I believe you really have to earn this credential. 

PMP Coaching Experience
As soon as I decided to do PMP in the month of October 2017, I reached out to a provider. 28th October was the first day of class and it was led by Mr Satya Narayan Dash. Satya walked in to the class and set some ground rules - be attentive, participate in the sessions, and actively listen.

Four days of session was very informative. Satya is a master in project management. We went through each and every chapter and touched all important areas. The mock questions and answers at the end of each chapter showed us where we lack. Also, we went through some significant flows such as change requests flow and how the deliverables flow until it is being accepted – it defines the quality and in-depth knowledge of Satya. 

At the end of 4th day session he gave us 30 questions. Based on the scores, we were informed how much more effort we have to put in-order to clear the exam. Satya proceeded to hand-hold us - how to plan each week, how to prepare, what to do a week before the exam, meeting the Prometric staffs, and also not to study anymore, day before exam. 

I believe this was a complete session. I had attended another session of PMP before, but the class of Satya provided me the needed confidence and knowledge to give this exam.

Own Study
On the final day of the PMP session, we were provided with 30 questions which covered all knowledge areas. To be frank, I scored 12. My target of giving exam in January 2018 looked too far, as he mentioned I would require at-least 4 months of preparation with 6 hours of effort daily. But if I put in more effort, then the time will be reduced. I put out a plan of 8 hours study in a day along with my office work. 

This is what I did. 
  • Demystifying the PMBOK Guide is not easy it has to be done with some other books and then study PMBOK.
  • I studied Satya’s “I Want To Be PMP” initially and then covered the PMBOK guide.
  • After couple of rounds studying, I did all the questions from “I Want to be PMP”, Rita’s book and Christopher Scordo’s practice sets. 
  • As Satya mentioned -  do only quality questions and I stuck to these mocks. 
  • One last free mock provided by simpli learn. I’ve tried nearly 3,000 mock questions.

Book Review - I Want To Be A PMP
The reason I bought this book, because it is really difficult to demystify the PMBOK guide. It looked very heavy to me. Another person in the class had this book and informed it is very easy to understand.  As I went through this book, in fact, it was in simple English and easy to understand and had all the latest changes of PMBOK

The videos on Earned Value Management (EVM), a number of flow charts, which are really unique and help you to understand the topic in the first time itself. 

It will give you many Yogic Tips, which will help you a lot during exam.

PMP Exam Experience
I scheduled my exam on 3rd January, 2018. It took a lot of courage to do it with just 2 months of hard preparation.

Strategy for exam: I blindly followed what Satya had told in the class. Taking 3-4 mins gap after 75 questions and completed my exam 15 mins ahead of schedule and took 10 mins to review my answers, which I had marked. In the remaining few minutes, I said to myself - it’s enough and submitted my answers.

After submitting the answers, it takes around 3 minutes to show the results. Believe me those 3 minutes were one of the toughest in my life. All the hard work paid off seeing “Congratulations”. It was my dream and I achieved it.

There were lot of questions on Schedule Performance Index (SPI) and Cost Performance Index (CPI). I had to tell where a project is ahead of schedule of over cost. Same questions came at least 4 times at different period in time, in different ways. I had around 15 questions related to mathematics. I didn’t have any questions on Point of Total Assumption (PTA) and To Complete Performance Index (TCPI). 

Suggestions for PMP Aspirants
  • Please do as much quality mock exam as possible. Read all the correct and wrong answers.
  • Don’t mug up the Inputs, Tools and Techniques and Outputs (ITTOs). Rather understand the concept and the reason why it is there.
  • Read questions twice and especially the last line. 

I want to be a better manager where people look up to me. I want to be an expert in project management. I want to enhance my carrier and move up the ladder. 

Brief Profile 
Karthik Hongalkar, working as a technical lead at Eurofins IT solutions for past 6 years. 

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    1 comment:

    1. Once again Congratulations Kartik! You have decoded the exam prep for aspiring candidates in a crisp manner.


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