Thursday, July 17, 2014

PMP Success Story - Don’t be overwhelmed by the hype created, Start preparing immediately - Earlier is Better!



A well-known saying goes as:

“If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants."

This has been quoted by many in the field of science, medicine, management, and new technological advances. They not only have their own achievements, but also let us know how they were able to proceed and faced the challenges. Indeed, we learn from people who have already gone through the whole nine yards and it enables us to have our paths smoother and better.

TV Vamsi Jaya Prasad, whom I call Vamsi affectionately, is a proud PMP today. He is one of the fastest to crack the PMP exam – in less than two months. Yes! Within two months!

Vamsi shares his experience in his certification journey for PMI-PMP exam.

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Dear all,

It is great pleasure to share my PMI-PMP experience with you all.

35 PDU Contact Program:

I attended the PMI-PMP workshop from 19th April 2014 to 27th April, 2014, a 4 day workshop. We were trained by Satya Narayan Dash. It was a good learning experience. Workshop was conducted in very professional manner with focus towards PMI-PMP exam objectives.

PMBOK material is a huge one to grasp with. I read few topics prior to training however I was left with many dots. I am impressed the way Satya connected those dots and made whole learning very interesting by sharpening the intellect of all participants.

The workshop contained good number of real life illustrations, experiences that gave practical insights into the concepts of project management. I am extremely impressed the way Satya depicted the process interactions and information flow among processes areas in various knowledge areas under 5 process groups.

I am very thankful to Satya, our coach and trainer for the program.

Preparation – Books followed, Practice Tests:

I went through the notes prepared during the workshop. I studied PMBOK comprehensively and also additionally studied the book on PMP Exam Prep by Rita Mulcahy. I practiced questioned from Rita Mulcahy’s book and completed full length 6 mock tests from the provider once I felt confidence on the theory part that is after 4 weeks of starting my preparation.

PMBOK, Prioritization, Conceptual Focus:

I have given more focus on reviewing PMBOK as many times as possible – I reviewed more than 5-6 times. I covered the all knowledge areas with the order of priority as follows: Procurement, Risk Management, Scope, Schedule and Cost Management, Quality Management, HR Management, Communications Management and Integration and Stake Holder Management. I focused on Earned Value Management, Communication Channels, and Expected Monetary Value Analysis, PERT Diagrams and Critical Path Measurement as mentioned by Satya.

If you focus on conceptual understanding on PMBOK and its concepts, then the exam is going to be much easier to crack.

Exam Experience:

I appeared the exam on 28th June 2014. Most of the questions were on conceptual understanding and situational. Around 20 questions were mathematical. No negative questions are asked. Questions with except, true or false, are not asked. Few of the questions were even half a page length. Few questions were tricky. However, a deep understanding of the PMP Concepts is sufficient. Many questions were tricky but common sense with sound understanding combined with concepts learned during the 4 day program by Satya, enabled me to score.

I took 3 hours 50 minutes to answer all questions with a break of 5 minutes after 100 questions. I took rest of 10 minutes to review the question that I marked earlier. I ensured all questions are answered. When finally clicked on finish “congratulations” displayed on being a PMP – it was immensely gratifying.

My suggestions to PMP aspirants:

Do’s:
Since I appeared within 2 months’ time, I was able to recollect the knowledge imparted in the workshop. I feel it is better to start preparing exam immediately after the workshop. Even if you appear for the exam after having thoroughly prepared (say after eight to nine months) you are going to score the same marks. Earlier is better.

Don’ts:
Studying for the purpose of exam will not be beneficial to the owner of the certificate. Refer books for widening your understanding and knowledge. But do not confuse yourself. I suggest don’t be overwhelmed by the hype created by few of the preparation books available in the market - exam is reasonable to test the true knowledge of project management and not so difficult with unwanted complexities.

I have experienced that Satya’s workshop goes beyond the exam, and it ensures that the participants understand the subject and use it properly in their respective fields. In my experience, the course materials provided for classroom session and additional tips and tricks shared by Satya Narayan, are sufficient to pass the exam.

Good luck to all the future PMP aspirants. Time and money spent is worth the experience.

-- TV Vamsi Jaya Prasad, Manager-Projects, Cognizant Technology Solutions


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Brief Profile: TV Vamsi Jayaprasad is a senior IT professional and has been associated with the technology industry in various leadership roles. Till recently he was with MindTree Limited in Bangalore, India. Currently he works as Manager-Projects for Cognizant Technology Solutions(CTS) in Chennai, India. His online PMP profile is available at PMI Online Credential Registry. 



Footnote: This is a new initiative taken to share the experience in PMP exam by fellow professionals and colleagues who have cracked the exam. PMP Certification from PMI is not an easy exam to crack. It takes time to prepare, solid understanding in project management concepts and above all applying those concepts in real time situations. I am thankful to Vamsi for sharing his experience, which I believe will enrich others in their journey for PMI-PMP exam. 


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