How Training as a Group for PMP Certification Can Benefit Your Company

Training as a Group for PMP<sup>®</sup> Certification Can Benefit Your Company
In-house group training for the Project Management Professional (PMP)® certification is becoming more and more popular with Project Management Academy customers, and for good reason. As outlined in another article, Five Reasons Employers Prefer PMP Certification, many requests for proposals are specifically including PMP certification by key personnel as a requirement. As such, many companies find themselves scrambling to get their employees certified quickly. Continue reading

Why Employers Prefer PMP Certification

Employers Prefer PMP Certification
If you have researched project manager job listings recently, then you already know how much weight the Project Management Professional (PMP)® certification carries in the workplace. Indeed, the clear majority show PMP certification as either required or strongly preferred. A search of “pmp certified project manager” on yields 63,418 results. And that number is likely to keep rising. Continue reading

Why Firm PMP Course Dates are a Must

Ensuring your PMP course date does not change
Imagine you are taking four days away from work. You probably start by getting the time approved by your supervisor, then adjusting your project schedule to ensure that activities requiring your close oversight are not performed that week. You go on to let key personnel know you will be away, and whom to contact in your absence. You re-schedule any meetings that were set to occur during those days, make any necessary childcare arrangements, and in some cases, book travel to the course location. Then you get the email – your PMP® course has been postponed due to low enrollment, and the new dates don’t work for you at all. “Sorry for the inconvenience, read the fine print…” Continue reading

EVM3 Overview

Earned Value Management Maturity Model
Each year, I work with hundreds of business people to prepare for the Project Management Professional (PMP)® exam. One of the most challenging topics in the course is Earned Value Management (EVM). Asking for a show of hands in response to the question, “who here actually figures out the Earned Value Management on their projects?” the response is, overwhelmingly, week after week, less than 10%. In an audience of 20 people, that is only one or two people at best. Continue reading

Managing Scope Creep: An Ounce of Prevention

Managing Scope Creep
Project managers often speak of “managing” scope creep, which begs the question: “Shouldn’t we be trying to eliminate it instead?”

To answer that question, we should first consider whether scope creep is actually avoidable in the first place. And if it is, do we really want to “avoid” it altogether? After all, many innovative products and solutions were developed because of – not in spite of – scope creep. Continue reading

Transform Chaos into Results: How To Juggle Multiple Projects

Juggling Multiple Projects
Are you having trouble juggling multiple projects? Does it seem like nothing is getting done? Does your task list grow longer and longer each passing day? These feelings are quite common and can often lead to burn-out. However, it doesn’t have to be that way. In this article, I’ll explain some simple and effective ways to manage multiple projects, conflicting priorities and a seemingly impossible workload. Continue reading

Project Selection Methods: A Primer for the Project Manager

Business decisions
The success of an enterprise often hinges on the projects it selects, so this is an area of project management – and indeed business management – that should not be overlooked. While there is no “one size fits all” approach for selecting a project, and organizations will differ widely in how they approach this task, the following may help the project manager be as useful as possible in the process. Continue reading

Brainstorming: Lessons from the Film Industry

In the film and television industry, the process of brainstorming is often described using the more visceral and more visually descriptive term “spitballing.” The term spitballing comes from the idea that participants can throw ideas around and “see what sticks.” Although the terminology feels quite informal, spitballing is a hugely important part of developing a creative project and is typically utilized consistently from project inception through project close. Continue reading

Five Tips to Improve your Communication Style

Technology in the hands
Whether in email, phone conversations or face-to-face meetings, communicating effectively does not come easily for many people. A lapse in communication in the workplace can lead to something as trivial as a rift between colleagues to missed deadlines or rework. Examples abound for each of these cases but the common theme is the same – communication failures result in lost productivity. By making a few simple changes, you can avoid these common pitfalls and improve your communication style. Continue reading

Risk Management

Risk Management
Projects are, by their nature, unique. In fact, the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide) says that a project is “a temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product, service, or result.”1 So in that uniqueness is uncertainty and with that uncertainty, risk. If you think about it, pretty much everything on a project is risky including availability of resources, estimates for both cost and time, procurement lead times and requirements. Continue reading