Jan 02

My journey to achieving PMP

August 11th, 2011: As a result of my post titled “Is a Project Management Certification Worth it?”, I was involved in several constructive talks and was even hinted by few individuals that I shouldn’t have made comments especially since I wasn’t certified.

October 18th, 2011: My friend, Paresh Nagar whom I hadn’t heard from in several months sends me an email regarding his interest in registering for a PMP Exam preparation course running between October 29th 2011 and December 10th 2011. I immediately contacted Paresh wishing him luck and he asked me if I wanted to join him for the course. I unfortunately had to turn it down primarily due to my intended travel plans that coincided with major portions of the course.

October 27th, 2011: The 1% probability that my travel plan would get cancelled due to an external event occurred leaving me dejected. Well, destiny has its games! My wife calls and informs me that our friends, Paresh Nagar and Lupita Arrese, who also happen to be her work colleagues, had just received their copy of PMBOK 4th edition delivered to their office. I was like “WOW – that service coming from a training provider is something that I haven’t heard in a long time”. What next? She continues that I should use our travel cancellation as an excuse or reason or hint to enroll myself for the course too. Here we go again; I started the debate with my loving wife on “Is PMP certification really worth it?” :)

I took her viewpoints seriously and spoke to the training vendor Platinum CPD situated in Knowledge Village, Dubai, UAE. I was personally attended by the Managing Partner of the institute, Anas Abu-Hamam, who impressed me with his professionalism. He answered my queries and put me at ease despite being a last minute entrant.

October 29th, 2011: Attended the 1st of the 5 full day classes. I was pleasantly surprised that the instructor, Omran Zbeida, was one of the contributors to the PMBOK 4th edition. His name was on the book too. As with any instructor and with all due respect to all, I initially had reservations about this instructor too – not from a knowledge perspective, but from a communication perspective. Within the first few minutes, I knew that I had nothing to worry about. The instructor demonstrated fluency in his presentation & communication skills that would keep me awake for the full day. Yes, this is extremely important as you wouldn’t want to be in a situation where you cannot follow the class due to reasons ranging from language, accent, pitch, tone, pauses, content delivery, etc… Omran was right up there!

Mid-November, 2011: My friend, Karthik Chamy, contacted me in regards to my blog post and we continued discussions on the same subject. Yes, we did take it positively and reached consensus! He later told me that he had just cleared his PMP examination. Needless to say, he was extremely excited with a sense of achievement all over him that was very much evident during our talk. Once again – congratulations mate!

December 10th, 2011: My 5th and final day of the course. You might be wondering, how can a 5 day course stretch so far, well – it was conducted on Saturdays with two Saturdays skipped in between due to public holidays. In hindsight, such breaks are not ideal – at least for me.

December 12th, 2011: I became a member of PMI (Project Management Institute)

December 14th, 2011: Application for PMP submitted

December 19th, 2011: PMP Eligibility received. My wife was asking me when I intended to write the exam – I told her at the earliest. She reminded me that I should factor in exam preparation timelines along with personal family commitments.

December 20th, 2011: PMP Test scheduled for 5th January 2012 @ 07.30am. Why am I in a hurry? Well, I like to work with deadlines and plan my work around it. Yes, despite the personal commitments including wedding anniversary, attending to guests living with us and in midst of the festive atmosphere, I selected this date. Why 07.30am? Well, I prefer early mornings and the other choice of 12.30pm doesn’t sit well with me.

December 27th, 2011: PMP Test rescheduled for 2nd January 2012. Are you thinking that I’m insane? As if 5th January wasn’t too far and that I’ve rescheduled to 2nd January 2012? My wife despite being confident of my abilities was visibly concerned and asks me again if I did the right thing to reschedule the exam to an even earlier date. I smiled and she got her answer.

December 31st, 2011 & January 1st, 2012: Nothing related to the PMP journey, but I had a nice long walk with my wife to watch the fireworks off Burj Khalifa (the tallest man made structure in the world at 829.84m). Just using this space to tell the visitors to never forget spending quality time with your family even if it means to forgo something important! Know your priorities and manage your work around it.

January 2nd, 2012: I had my exam scheduled at the Prometric centre in Knowledge Village, Dubai, UAE at 7.30am. As indicated before, I like early mornings so found this time to be my best to take a go at the test. Fast forward four hours and the computer screen displays: “PASS – Congratulations”. Don’t quote me on the exact wordings as I didn’t store that in my memory cells :)

That was my journey and I’d like to take this opportunity to thank everyone mentioned on this post and others who were part of this journey. I’ve been introduced to few new concepts during this journey which will certainly benefit me in the longer run. And yes, I still stick with my viewpoints mentioned in my previous post even after being certified. For those who are interested in the details on my study plan, resources used, tips, pointers, etc… please be patient as I work towards compiling a comprehensive subsequent post.


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  1. Marcel

    Congratz, but are you then a ‘black’ belt PMP?

    1. Perhaps, it’s a matter of time before we hear buzz words like that!

  2. Iman

    Congratulations, Noaman :)

  3. Mitchelle Velho

    Wow, Noaman. Congrats, another feather in your cap.

  4. Felice

    Well done !

  5. Rafi

    That sounds interesting!
    By the way, congratulations buddy.

  6. Neeil Bhatia

    Hi Noaman,

    I liked your blog especially when I was researching on “who to seek advise from for PMP”. It’s funny I found you on google :)

    Anyway, I am now a member of PMI and paid USD 139. I think the next step should be to select the Training Centre and Trainer. Look like I will take your advise on this.

    Thanks for posting this blog as it placed all the puzzles in right place.

    Kind regards,
    Neeil Bhatia

    1. Noaman Sayed

      Hi Neeil,

      Nice to hear from you – courtesy google :)

      As always, I’m a phone call away – would love to guide you through!


  7. Joseph Moore

    The article posted is really helpful and effective.The ideas you shared about your journey is effective and it will definietly help others to become PMP certified. Project Managers have a lot of responsibility on how to deal with the existing project and deal with new projects .They need to plan, to execute, to measure, to evaluate, to communicate.

  8. Berry Doves

    Wonderful article, a very good detailed information about PMP program. The Project Management Professional (PMP)® is the most important industry-recognized certification for project managers.If you become PMP certified it would add a lot of value to your career for growth in any organization.

    1. Noaman Sayed

      Thank you Berry.

  1. My PMP Study Plan & Materials | Noaman Sayed

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