To be honest, year 2017 just slipped by. Nothing significant happened. I will not say I did not stick to my personal resolutions for the year 2017, because I did not have any resolutions for year 2017 in the first place. Life happened without any aim or target. I am sure that this is not the way to live life. This is not the first time I am facing such dilemmas in life, and it is exactly at those moments, I pull out the book ‘Seven habits of highly effective people’ by Stephen R Covey from my personal library. The first thing I did during the year 2018 is the same. Inspired by the concepts of this book, whatever I planned ten years back are all accomplished. That is the real crisis. Now what do I do?
Urgent and important activities of mine during 2017 (these things were deadline driven and were my bread winners, so I had to do them)
Conducting Agile project management using scrum workshops
Coaching people for PMP certification
Teaching project management at a leading business school
Urgent but not important activities of 2017
Impulse to log into social media
Checking offers on amazon
Watching time killers on youtube
Not urgent but important activities during 2017
Cycling and photography (helped me to stay fit and relax)
Spending time with family ( I am not sure whether I did justice to it)
Going for a medical check up ( Just neglected it)
Meditation and prayer ( I did it well in 2017)
Working on my youtube channel (have started paying me. To be honest, google is the only company (social media related) who helped me to earn some additional money)
Not urgent and not important activities of 2017
Spending too much time with my dog, playing with him. I do not want to eliminate this and at the same time want to moderate it.
Facebook addiction ( This I must get rid off. To be honest, this is the one which consumed most of my time in 2017)
Look at those PMP preparatory books kept on top of PMBOK (PMBOK is at the bottom of the stack). Most of these PMP preparation books are heavier than the original PMBOK, and they are intended to make the PMP preparation easier!. I can only empathize with the PMP aspirants. The authors of these books have forgotten the fact that one is not eligible for applying for PMP exam without 4-5 years of hands on experience in live projects. For many PMP credential is more like a hygiene factor. Having a PMP credential may not make them better project managers because they already have the knowledge. Not having the PMP credential prevents them from getting better opportunities. They already know many things about project management. Most of them are going for PMP certification to get an endorsement for the project management knowledge they already possess and some additional knowledge they can gain during the study. At least that was the case with me. In fact, the professional ethics of the project managers was a revelation for me. I had around ten years of project experience when I started noticing this fancy three letters ‘PMP’ after the names of project managers. Further exploration kindled my interest because most of the topics were already known to be, hence the thought of getting an endorsement for the knowledge I already possessed. I do not regret it till date.
This being the case, most of these authors are unnecessarily making the PMP journey tougher and monotonous , than required. What is the point in rephrasing the knowledge available in the parent document as if it is their own wisdom and then burdening the PMP aspirant more. I have come across many who are referring to multiple PMP preparatory books. Look at the unnecessary preparation load. My humble suggestion is to;
Stick to PMBOK. It has a wealth of information. It is easy to understand and remember, if read in a particular manner. An experienced mentor will be able to add lot of value to you by making it easy and interesting.
Do not go after multiple PMP preparatory books. It will make your life miserable. Having multiple copies / versions of bible have not helped anyone to go to heaven. It is about having that one authentic one and understanding it, studying it with complete focus, till you reach your goal.
These days there are no dearth for free advice and mentors. The trend is to publish ‘my pmp experience’ to the social media and become self proclaimed mentors immediately after the PMP examination. Hear everyone, listen to a few. Find a competent and experienced mentor who can make your life easier by guiding you through the good practices of PMBOK, than enrolling for a traditional classroom training.
PMBOK knowledge alone will not help you to pass the PMP credential exam. Exam practice is very important. Instead of doing thousands of questions and answers, stick to a good sample and ensure that you score above 85% consistently, before you go for the final exam.
Do not lock yourself in classrooms and waste your valuable time to understand things like;
What is a project?
What is an operation?
What is a PMO?
What are enterprise environmental factors?
What are organizational process assets…..etc…
Anyone with more than 5 years of project experience will be able to understand these by reading PMBOK. One must spend the classroom time (onlne, classroom) wisely to understand the 20 percentage of concepts like project chartering, WBS, scheduling, critical path, earned value management, professional ethics, which will provide you with the knowledge and confidence to answer 80% of the questions correctly.
There was nothing unusual for the normal eye to capture, yet the photographer in me was not willing to give up. Once I hang the DSLR around my neck, I must click. So started the search for beauty in the ordinary. I loved the lighting.
Every leader is a servant first and then a leader. The first step to become a servant leader is to have a grateful heart. Today while coaching a group of young engineers in agile project management using scrum, a sense of gratitude towards my parents, towards my teachers, towards my mentors, towards my family, towards my business partners, towards the audience who enabled me to stand up infront of a group of intelligent engineers with confidence and add some value to them engrossed me. A grateful heart, attitude is the starting point towards transitioning into a servant leader. Ultimately Iam grateful to my Lord for creating me for a definite purpose on planet earth and for providing me with the talents to accomplish it.