PMP Certification07 Jan
Here’s a post I just found in the “I forgot to push the Publish button” file…
This past week (actually late August 2008), I achieved the Project Management Institute’s highly respected certification – the Project Management Professional (PMP). Unlike many certifications, PMI places a priority on verifying that a candidate has sufficient real-world experience to justify the credential. Before candidates can even schedule the exam, they have to document over 4500 hours of project management activities and at least 35 hours of formal education in project management. There is also an ongoing commitment to learning which requires PMPs to complete at least 60 hours of professional development activities over a 3 year span. So I’m pretty proud of this achievement.
The PMI method for managing projects, outlined in the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK), is extremely rigorous. Only the largest of projects would implement the entire methodology as described in the PMBOK. However, there are some great takeaways for smaller businesses.
- Project management is NOT status reporting. I recently ran across a posting for a Project Manager position for a local organization. They needed someone to manage a key system implementation. However, their view of what the PM should be doing was “making sure everyone was getting their work done”. A person who merely collects and distributes work status information is not doing project management. Make sure your project manager has the proper authority to make your project a success.
- Managing change and communication for the project are the most important reponsibilities of a project manager. How these activities are performed should be carefully thought out and actively managed. It doesn’t have to a formally written document, but the approach needs to be understood and followed consistently on every project.
- A project is “progressively elaborated”. This means you learn more about the project and adjust your plans accordingly as the project progresses. So don’t fall into the trap of believing that following a project management methodology prevents you from exploiting your advantages as a smaller business to move quickly and nimbly.
For many reasons, IT projects are infamous for having a low rate of success. Don’t let the lack of qualified project management be the cause of your project failure.