Since the publication of “Rita Mulcahy’s PMP Exam Prep, Ninth Edition” back in January, we have been getting a number of questions asking why the book does not cover Agile Process. These readers note that A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide) – Sixth Edition, discusses Agile through out and is shipped in a package set with the “Agile Practice Guide.” Seeing what they consider an obvious disconnect they reasonably ask whether RMC is suggesting that there will be no Agile questions on the PMP exam.
The Program Management Improvement and Accountability Act of 2015 (PMIAA) was intended to create a uniform set of standards and guidelines for implementing programs within the federal government. PMIAA also mandated the creation of a career path for program managers. On its face, PMIAA sounds like a great idea, but there may be complications that keep it from achieving the goals sought by Congress. One issue is that PMIAA fails to clearly define a “program.”
It’s that time again. The Project Management Institute® (PMI) has updated their book A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide). This occurs every four years. It’s PMI’s way of keeping the book current with today’s project management practices.
For RMC it means that all of our books, software, and classes have to be revised to stay in alignment with the PMBOK® Guide-Sixth Edition. It also provides us with the opportunity to make other changes to our products and courses so we can deliver the best possible learning experiences. And we are hard at it. Read on to learn about what exactly we are changing and how it aligns with the new PMBOK® Guide.
Project managers spend 90 percent of their time on communication related activities; yet communication is reported to be the No. 1 problem on projects.
Consider the following example: While planning one of my projects, my core project team assessed our sponsor, “William”, to have high influence but low interest in our project. William would routinely arrive late to meetings, be distracted by his phone, and leave early saying he had more important meetings to attend. When he was present, his gloomy attitude affected the rest of the team. They did not want to speak up in front of him fearing that they may have to face his disdain.
Understanding vs. Memorization
Why does RMC focus on understanding rather than memorization? As RMC’s project management practice leader I’m often asked: “why can’t I just memorize the process names, inputs, tools, techniques, and outputs (ITTOs) and pass the exam?” The answer to this question is quite simple. Understanding works, memorization does not, especially in the context of the PMP® exam. Let’s discuss understanding vs. memorization.
When students discover Rita’s Process Chart, they often ask us, “Which parts should I memorize?” It’s a simple question, right? Unfortunately, the answer isn’t so straightforward. It’s more than just memorizing―it’s realizing that, in order to pass the exam, you need to thoroughly understand each process.
Applicable to PMP® Exams Taken on or After January 11th, 2016
In June of 2015, the Project Management Institute (PMI) released an updated version of the “Project Management Professional (PMP)® Examination Content Outline,” which will be applied to all PMP examinations taken after January 11, 2016. (PMI had initially planned on changing the exam starting on November 2nd, 2015, but they later pushed the date back to January.)
Talk about overused expressions! This one has certainly run its course over the last 5-10 years. As much as I tire of hearing the phrase “Think out of the box”, I have to wonder about the use of the “box” metaphor.
Maybe there is a physical reason? Back in the late 20th century, we found ourselves with the need to employ many knowledge workers. So, in the interest of efficiently utilizing floor space and affording them the privacy they needed to do their work, we put them all in these 3′ x 5′ boxes that were 5′ high on three sides. Of course, it is now the 21st century and we now know that rather than make them productive, it made them feel physically and emotionally isolated.
Projects requiring coordination among cultures are on the rise and are here to stay. A project manager could be implementing a project in their own country and easily have stakeholders from India, China, Mexico, or Israel, for example. Each stakeholder will bring different points of view based on their upbringing and experiences—based on their culture. Savvy project managers who are able to navigate different cultures will not only deploy global projects more successfully in the future, but will also increase their professional capital.