Over the years I have helped over 5782+ students with their PMP exam preparation.
I have interviewed over 331+ PMPs to learn their prep advice secrets.
During these tens of thousands of interactions, I have seen several trends, strategies, and human behavior-related nuances that, when employed right, can help you pass the exam with ease.
In the first part of the ‘PMP Exam Made Easy’ series, we saw the top 5 tips you can use to simplify PMP prep efforts and increase the odds of success.
Let’s see the 5 more PMP prep tips today.
Bookmark this series of articles and visit regularly to refine your PMP prep approach!
Get a cup of your fav brew, share this page with a friend, and dive in! 😀
Grab my free PMP course to supercharge your PMP study!
👉 PMP Exam Made Easy, Tip #6: Join an engaging study community.
It takes a village to raise a child.
Why not take advantage of this concept?
A supportive community helps you accelerate your PMP journey.
A community has people putting collective effort towards ONE goal.
That is very powerful.
You must leverage.
Being part of a supportive community helps you,
- Try out strategies & tips others share
- Get support when things are not going well
- Get an accountability pal & stay on course
- Find a study buddy & learn together
Your time is precious.
Best spent on study & moving ahead.
What you need to avoid is –
- Participating in non-PMP topic discussions
- Joining too many communities
- Falling for any illegal offers
- Ego-based discussions
In these communities, you can expect daily sample exam questions & answers, flashcards, study links, interviews of fresh PMPs, and healthy discussions.
I run 2 daily -support communities you can join:
Join them for free today.
You got this!
Get top 5 popular articles to help you pass PMP with confidence:
- PMP FAQ – Discover the nuances!
- 9 insane PMP prep tips, from 9 years of coaching
- PMP Exam Study in 2022: 5 Traps You Must Avoid
- 15 top PMP strategies from 327+ PMPs I’ve interviewed
- Grab this week’s top PMP resource discounts, offers, bonuses!
👉 PMP Exam Made Easy, Tip #7: Your study resources decide how easy or hard PMP is going to be.
If you began PMP study because someone gave you a book, or
you got a free pdf of PMBOK guide as a PMI member, or
you found a cheap course on Udemy or Skillshare,
you may be in for some hard times.
Let me explain why.
After working closely with over 5782+ PMP students,
interviewing close to 331+ freshly baked PMPs,
answering tens of thousands of emails,
I’ve come to realize this:
👉 Your study resources decide how easy or hard PMP is going to be.
PMP is one of the few exams with such vast content to study.
Even if you take just PMBOK (with APG), you’ve got about 900+ pages to study.
(and we both know that the preparation takes more than this study).
- If you don’t enjoy reading a book, PMBOK guide may be of no use.
- If you find someone’s explanation boring, a course is of no use.
- If you don’t want to dig in long hours, going solo may be risky.
What am I getting at?
Maybe something you already know.
👉 Find out YOUR best way to learn.
Then choose study resources to align with it.
- Love reading books? – go for PMBOK & Rita (or HeadFirst).
- Love watching videos? – go with a video course.
- Need guidance & nudge? – find a mentor.
- Need even more? – go for a combo.
PMP is a medium/long-term goal.
It takes 6 weeks or more, on average.
Please make it as easy for you as possible.
Research and choose your study resources wisely.
Your TRUE benefit of becoming a better PM happens,
not AFTER you pass the exam with AT results,
but DURING your preparation.
You EARN your PMP through your study,
and not by simply passing an exam.
That’s the truth.
Get 5 recent PMP’s strategies to help you pass PMP:
- “I work at the university and PMP helps me excel!”, says Felcy,PMP
- “With strong basics, you can get over any blockers”, says Markus, PMP
- “PMP stands for Practice PMI-mindset Perfectly”, says Balachandiran, PMP
- “Use a proven system & mentor to pass PMP effortlessly”, says Prakash, PMP
- “Community eases your PMP voes & helps you succeed”, says RenukaPrasad, PMP
👉 PMP Exam Made Easy, Tip #8: Create an education budget for PMP.
The PMP exam fee is $555.
With PMP, you can expect 16%-25% salary jump (per PMI’s survey).
As an example, if you make $100K/yr, with PMP under your belt, expect $125K/yr
These numbers are essential for the cost-benefit analysis of PMP.
Of course, we are not quantifying,
- eligibility for certain posts,
- acknowledgment as a PM expert,
- the ability to manage projects efficiently,
- confidence to take up challenging projects,
..and a ton more benefits.
Just the cost and the tangible benefits.
Many people want to study with only PMBOK (not one of the juiciest books, some admit).
This may work great if you love reading from books, and have an innate interest in dry PM topics.
Then you don’t have to spend more on learning resources.
For the majority, this is not the case.
👉 You need an Education Budget for PMP.
Typically, 60%-200% of the exam fee.
Depending on the study options you want to go for.
Here are some average figures to get an idea.
- Top 2 Books: ~$150
- A Video course: ~$250
- Good PMP Simulator: ~$100
- An ATP course: up to $2000
- Private mentorship: $500-$1000
Know this –
- All of these are not necessary.
- Overall idea is to save time and effort.
- You can do it on your own by investing more time.
Treat PMP as yet another project.
Do a cost-benefit analysis against RoI.
Start your PMP with a specific Education Budget.
Look at the overall cost, considering your required timeframe.
Choose to invest in 1 to 2 resources (not more!) based on your own research.
👉 PMP Exam Made Easy, Tip #9: Enjoy PMP prep by finding a study buddy.
Ah, the fun of going back to the good old school days.
Exchanging notes, thoughts, and opinions.
Enjoying a fiercely good debate.
Make the arduous PMP prep easier by injecting fun elements.
One of which is to,
👉 Enjoy the preparation by studying with a study buddy.
The benefits are many –
- Share unique perspectives
- Exchange study notes & flashcards
- Nudge each other to study consistently
- Hold each other accountable for the progress
- Help renew the commitment when things go wrong
“But I don’t have a study buddy!”
Just get one.
It’s very simple.
Here’s how –
- Bookmark 1-2 top PMP study groups (check out this, and this, and this, and this)
- After interacting for a few days, post asking for a study buddy
- Add your location, timezone, and tentative exam date
- When someone responds, fix a weekly 1-1 time
- Send a recurring Google calendar invite
- Exchange your respective study plans
- Quiz each other on studied topics
Follow these tips to make this work –
- Do not insist on following your ways
- Do not push to stick to study plan
- Always encourage the progress
- Divide & exchange flashcards
- Set agenda for 1-1 in advance
- Celebrate each other’s wins
- Stick to PMP discussions
PMP prep can be made into a nightmare or an absolutely relishing fun exercise.
Start making it the latter one by finding a study buddy.
Remember, PMP is done in baby steps.
You’ve got this.
Get 3 popular articles on PMP study:
- How to calculate Critical Path, Float and Early- & Late- Starts & Finishes
- Corrective Action Vs Preventive Action Vs Defect Repair
- How to create your Project Schedule – the right way
👉 PMP Exam Made Easy, Tip #10: Find a coach, & you’re 5X more likely to ace PMP.
You want to take the fastest way to get certified.
You want to make it an enjoyable journey.
Best avoid doing it as a solo thing.
👉 Find a coach, and you’re 5X likely to ace PMP.
Who’s a coach?
- That increases odds
- That’s walked the path
- That knows all the pitfalls
- Can help you get past them
- Gives you path-of-least-resistance
- And, can be your accountability buddy
Who can be a coach?
- That’s PMP certified (of course),
- Working in your organization,
- Your course instructor,
- Offering as a service,
- Or, you trust & ask.
Look for that coach today.
See the difference it makes.
The PMP exam is a complex (and weird) one.
Don’t do it alone—avoid the struggle.
Get a coach to fast-track it for you.
Get in. Get certified. Get out.
Focus on the next level.
You got this.
In part-1 of this series, we covered 5 top PMP study tips:
1. Include PMBOK and APG* as part of your study resources.
2. Recreate the Process Chart from PMBOK, intuitively.
3. Study every single day.
4. Treat PMP Like A Marathon.
5. Find A Support System.
In this second part, we’ve covered:
6. Join an engaging study community.
7. Your resources decide difficulty level.
8. Create an education budget for PMP prep.
9. Enjoy your PMP prep by finding a study buddy.
10. Find a coach, and you’re 5X more likely to ace PMP.
Hope these tips will help you simplify your PMP prep, and even fast-track it.
So you can enjoy the preparation and be certain to an extent of passing it with an Above Target score.
Please bookmark these pages, I’ll soon publish the third part of this series.
Shiv Shenoy, PMP
I share content every day to help project managers grow fast. Follow me on LinkedIn and click the Bell icon to not miss any posts.