Monday, 4 July 2016

My Raodmap - The Plan of Plans

Have a plan and create win-win situation:

At this time, I have completed the first 3 chapters from SPM (Standard of Program Management. I have decided to use only SPM as my primary and authoritative source of knowledge. I will be following a process that I have tried and tested before. I have also established the roadmap keeping in the mind moving components as well as summer vacations. I may have to shift my schedule by 3 weeks so I can have some time off with my daughter in Europe. I have always believed roadmap is great way of establishing milestones and meeting them in a timely fashion as that enhances the whole experience. It also provides focus as well as sense of personal achievement.

Before I present my roadmap, I must confess that I got a little sidetracked due to web surfing, trying to figure out best resources to prepare for the exam. Folks, there is a lot of information floating out there, especially everyone that has passed PgMP has somehow assumed the role of a mentor and presents a turnkey method of passing the exam. Most seems to be promoting some book, exam questions and what not. I had to stop myself from sidetracking and have decided to only use SPM (Standard of Program Management) as the guide. I have acquired some chapter wise questions that I plan on using and most importantly I will be trust my ability to ask question while reading SPM.
Who knows in the process of getting PgMP certified, I may end up creating the best exam reference source.

My goal out of this certification especially when I am taking time out of a my business is to make a perfect business case so that the investment of time and exploiting this opportunity leads to increasing my personal as well as professional capabilities along side adding another powerful stream to Education Edge, my school. The goal here is not to get one more designation, my goal is to learn and learn well so I can use my learning to create an easy and most economical PgMP roadmap as I have successfully done with PMP.
Take a look at my roadmap!!

Saturday, 2 July 2016

PgMP Certified - Put the Application in order

The PgMP Application - My experience 

Unlike PMP, PgMP application can be a little daunting (little will be misleading, it is VERY DAUNTING). I was surprised by the amount of detail that is required to complete this application and the exam fee of USD 800 doesn't elevate this experience either.

 I started filling the application on 23 June 2016 and yes I stopped, once I realized how much time, effort and detail was required to complete the application. I later felt it was the right decision to break up this task into two components, just like managing any program.

My advice - please keep aside atlest 6 - 8 hours for filling up this application and be patient. 

There are 3 components to the application

1.      Personal Details:
·       Here you provide details such as name, address, education qualifications etc. Guess what, not trying to scare you away, the easy part is over.

2.      Project Management Experience: 
·       If you are PMP Certified, please use the same experience from your PMP application. (You can download the copy of your PMP application PDF from your account – My Info – My Certification Info – Left Pane – My PMP)
·       We need to show 48 months, so I added 3 projects here with references as required.

3.      Program Management Experience:
This is where most of my time while filling up the application was spent. This was more time consuming than I thought. Below are some steps that I took in filling up the application.
  • I showed 2 large programs that I managed with a 500 word description. If I thought this was enough, there was much more information that I needed to provide later. This application was a discovery. A never ending process, at least that what it felt like when I was filling it up. Don’t Give up Guys just right here!!
  • The two programs that I showed were consecutive to each other and consecutive to the project management experience period. This is the method that I adopted however I don’t see any reason why you can not take any order (I guess order based on your experience will just fit well).
  • Under both programs, I had managed over 10 projects, but I showed 3 projects and one sub program each under them and most of the projects and sub programs were concurrent.
  • For each project listed under the program, PMI wants you to provide the name of the project manager that managed it, along with their emails and phone number for reference purposes. So I picked up the phone and called all of them to be ready to provide any reference that may be required.
  • It was at this time when I thought I was done and then came the most challenging part of the application. I had to describe in 500 words each my work as program manager in five performance domains of PgMP. It took me over 2 hours to finish just this section.
If you have gone through the PMP exam, I guess you would know that you are evaluated on 5 domain areas of Initiation, Planning, Execution, Monitoring and Controlling and finally Closing.
The 5 performance domains for PgMP are Program Strategy Alignment, Program Benefits Management, Program Stakeholder Engagement, Program Governance and finally Program Life Cycle Management.

Finally I was at the submit button, I was so late for a critical meeting but I was done. This application was one to the longest (18 pages in PDF) that I have ever filled. In the end there was a positive side to it, it gave me a refresh into my work experience.
A suggestion – Read the first 2 pages of SPM (Standard of Program Management) at a minimum before you attempt this beast of an application. I did not but I guess I have executed many programs and felt at ease.

This application is a great filter that PMI has put to keep a certain level of prestige with this designation, and if you get through this step, I guess you will put the effort to get this designation too!!
Here is my time line:
June 23: Started the filling the application
June 25: Submitted the application and received acknoledgement from PMI with a expected response time of 5-7 business days.
June 27: Received an email from PMI

June 27: Made the payments of over USD 975 (application fee + membership fee). Awesome news - No Audit. Panel review has started. I will hold tight now and focus on studying SPM.

July 2: Waiting anxiously for a response

My blog with a summary of first two chapters of SPM is next. For the time I have spent reading nothing looks out of ordinary as far as the SPM content goes......

Till next time.....

Hemant Dhariyal

Friday, 1 July 2016

PgMP Certification - Purpose, Objective and Timeline

Purpose of this Blog:

The purpose of this blog is to establish a framework to successfully achieve the PgMP Designation. This blog will present a daily diary of steps that I undertake from here on till I finally attain the PgMP designation.


This blog is being created with one sole objective that is to present a simpler, easier and faster method in attaining PgMP designation. In the end, I plan on presenting a roadmap for professionals who want to seriously pursue this designation amidst various professional as well as personal constraints.


After PMP, what? A question that remained with me. Getting PMP certified (first attempt and with "Proficient" in all domains) was a huge milestone that has led to many new adventures in my professional career. One aspect that has contributed to my professional success, first as a consultant and then as a small business entrepreneur has been PMP. The standard and my ability to drive the best practice to its application has given me visibility, greater work and most importantly personal as well as client satisfaction.

The timing of getting PMP certified coincided with my long term desire to establish an education institution that would provide education with accountability, integrity and most importantly allow folks to meet their professional goals. And with that desire coupled with my experience and passion, I started Education Edge. A school that would provide first and foremost the best advice over product selling. Enrolling more and more students was never the motto, transparent and honest advice led to the popularity of Education Edge in no time.

Soon after attaining PMP and with a successful small business now, I thought adding Business Analysis as a new stream was next big thing for me. I started my career as business analyst but as there was no formal standard prevalent at that time, learning happened with practice, peer interactions, books (boring as they could be) and sadly failures on projects (I must confess these failures impacted cost of projects). Requirements are such a critical aspect of project management as projects primary purpose is to deliver requirements. With IIBA gaining  popularity with their CBAP designation in Canada, I decided to pursue CBAP. 14 days and 140 hours later (yes 10 hours a day), I was CBAP certified. I did take a 35 hour course where the instructor ran slides and professionals like me took rest. Sadly the session was  so boring that 4 of us after our work would wait for this guy to finish his slides or should I say run the slide show for us.

So PMP and CBAP plus numerous other designations like ITIL, SCRUM, Product Owner, Project+, UML, Agile Certified Practitioner, ISTQB and many other technical designations,  I have waited for 1 year and now the itch to learn something new is back.

So I have decided to embark on this new journey - Get PgMP Certified. I will be maintaining a diary during the course of my preparation. This preparation will be based on my roadmap that I plan on establishing tomorrow.

About me:

                                                                    Hemant Dhariyal
                                                              Founder and CEO, Education Edge
                                                             Managing Partner, Talent Connected World Wide

Hemant Dhariyal is Founder and Managing Partner of Education Edge. With numerous industry designations, Hemant has executed and delivered mission critical projects to meet organization's strategic objectives. His knowledge and more importantly ability to apply standards with ease across enterprises has led to recognition for his work in Portfolio, Program and Project Management. Currently Hemant manages Education Edge and develops and delivers courses in North America. The success of his courses have led to Hemant being on Advisory Boards and continues to deliver advice that has led many organization to attain project management maturity.

In 2014, Hemant started a new joint venture in consulting and international education. Hemant is also on the executive board of Talent Connected World Wide - A company making a mark in New Zealand, Australia and India by aligning higher educational needs of students around the world with leading schools in New Zealand and Australia. With Hemant's expertise and ability to network with top organizational leadership, the Management Consulting arm of Talent Connected World Wide currently employs over 50 consultants. The phenomenal growth has been a result of focused approach and a roadmap built on formidable partnerships and most importantly delivery of products, services and results using best standard and practices.