Sunday, January 8, 2012

You must get PMP certification

People who are thinking about getting PMP certified, I recommend them to stop thinking and start acting. You should not spend more time in thinking because the decision is very simple and you have to get certified.
For further clarification I summarize the top seven reasons for making PMP certification your number one priority for this year:
 1.  PMP certification has become mandatory for many Project Management jobs and preferable choice for the rest. If you search for any Project Management related job, you will find PMP as a mandatory requirement in many cases. So get certified, get qualified for future project management jobs.
 2.  PMP demonstrates your commitment towards Project Management profession. Does PMP certification ensure whether the person is a good project manager? No, we can have good uncertified project managers who can perform as per expectations where some certified project managers might not perform, but the certification guarantees that the person is committed to project management profession. So get certified and demonstrate your commitment to project management skill.
 3.  If you are working as a Project Manager or you aspire to be Project Manager then you do not have any reason for not doing it. And yes, it requires some investment of money and time but the payback period is also very short sometimes less than a year. So this investment doesn't only have short payback period but also has high Internal Rate of Return, so go for it.
 4.  PMP is also getting very popular as a Qualification for the Project Managers. On an average, 5000 people are getting certified every month. If you want to be a part of such an elite group of project managers, so go for it.
 5.  Preparation for PMP certification will expose you to mainstream thinking on project management standards, techniques, best practices, and current trends. It is especially helpful for the people who are from technical background and working as project managers.  So if you want to know what matters the most while managing projects and what are the available or required tools and techniques for this? So go for it.
 6.  PMP certification process also introduces you to many networking opportunities and once you get certified you will also get the access to many more networking platforms.  It depends on you that how much you grab out of this. It’s a proven fact that networking helps people to grow in their professional life. So go for it.
 7. PMP will also boost your self-confidence and differentiate YOU from other project managers.
Hopefully you are convinced for getting certified but may be thinking about how to go for it? For this, we are organizing one event “How to crack PMP smartly” on 26 Feb 2012 in Delhi. People from NCR region (Delhi, Gurgaon and NOIDA) can easily participate and for the rest we are open to share our presentation material. It’s a free event and it will help you in making project plan for your PMP certification goal. Take action Register NOW.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Applying Broken Window Theory to Project Management

The broken windows theory is a criminology theory of the norm setting and signaling effect of urban disorder and vandalism on additional crime and anti-social behavior. The theory states that monitoring and maintaining urban environments in a well-ordered condition may stop further vandalism as well as an escalation into more serious crime.

Consider a building with a few broken windows. If the windows are not repaired, the tendency is for vandals to break a few more windows. Eventually, they may even break into the building, and if it's unoccupied, perhaps become squatters or light fires inside. Or consider a sidewalk. Some litter accumulates. Soon, more litter accumulates. Eventually, people even start leaving bags of trash from take-out restaurants there or breaking into cars.

Do we know what determines our behavior? A major factor in determining individual behavior is social norms; Humans constantly monitor other people and their environment in order to determine what the correct norms are for the given situation. People do as others do and the group makes sure that the rules are followed.

How this helps Project Manager? It teaches that Project manager must follow principle of Zero Tolerance, problems crop up when we begins to tolerate constant non conformance. The more we turn a blind eye to problems, the more problems crop up. We need to follow Zero tolerance policy by examining every incident of non conformance, we need to ensure that broken windows are fixed and that recurrences are rare in the Project.

All Project commitments need to be tracked and it should not be acceptable to slip commitments for even small tasks. Task tacking tools (like one I made using goolgle apps , and it is free) should be used to ensure complete tracking of due tasks . Project Manager needs to ensure that task slippages are tracked and fixed else it will become norm.

References :

Saturday, February 12, 2011

How fast are we adopting Cloud Computing?

I have been thinking about potential of cloud computing since I visited Cloud camp last year, cloud was not much known concept till that time but things have changed. PwC report includes cloud computing in three trends that are changing the face of $250 billion software market.  A report  by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) says that Cloud computing 'could give EU 763bn-euro boost' and could also create 2.4m jobs.

Cloud computing market in India currently stands at USD 10 million and is expected to reach USD 1,084 million by 2015 as per Zinnov Management Consulting Report, 2010.

A trend result of “cloud computing” on google trends (  reflects how cloud is becoming buzz word by passing years, but when I checked “Software as a Service”, “Platform as a Service” and “Infrastructure as a Service”,  I found that  not all are trending like cloud computing. Software as a Service has been  known for many years, where PaaS and IaaS have still not picked up.

As per survey done by DPCI and Wipro, Software-as-a-Service’ (SaaS) model is the most preferred Cloud service model being used / intended to be used by more than 90% of the organizations surveyed though there is also a growing use or willingness to use ‘Platform-as-a-Service’ (56%), ‘Infrastructure-as-a-Service’ (53%) and ‘Security-as-a-Service’ (53%) delivery.

There are several reasons for adopting Cloud Computing but ‘On Demand Scalability’, ‘Reduction in Capital Expenditure’ and ‘Reduction in Operational Expenditure’ were the top three reasons selected by the surveyed

The same survey revealed that – Data Security & Privacy, Compliance issues, and Legal & Contractual issues were perceived to be the top three challenges faced by the organizations in the adoption of Cloud Computing with 95% of the respondents rating Data Security & Privacy as a ‘Critical’ and ‘Very Important’ challenge.

Large enterprises are hosting non critical business application i.e.  Dealer management system, CRM, learning system to public cloud , critical application that demands data to reside within organization system , remains on the private cloud, I expect by next year most of the IT professionals will be knowing what cloud is as they know about XML.


Saturday, September 11, 2010

Why it is difficult to run the last mile?

I was running the half marathon last month; my third thus far, and as I advanced towards the finish line, a certain realization struck me. On all the three occasions, I had always found it difficult to run the last mile.
My marathon experience has raised some serious questions- It is not that I can’t run long distances, in fact the thrill, the pace, and most importantly the gratification of running for a purpose has always propelled me to participate. But irrespective of the distance, running the last mile has always been formidable, uncomfortable.
Is finishing a job always this difficult? And if yes, does it have to do with the expectation of outcomes? Or is it that we are too exhausted and stressed towards the end that we tend to lose focus and our sense of purpose.
As I as struggle to find answers, I will reason and ponder on each point separately and apply it to the marathon analogy.  Let me first talk about expectations of outcome. Assuming that I have already run twelve out of the thirteen miles that will lead me to the finish line, this is when I tend to become distracted. I start thinking about the post run events and it diverts my mind from the current race to future events, this in turn generates desperation of finishing the race, anyhow.
When I apply this analogy to a project situation, I realize that during the last phase of the project our focus seems to dissipate, we are low on accountability, prioritize lesser, and tend to slacken our hold because the goal appears closer. We start talking and thinking about upcoming projects, and enquiring about possible future opportunities. This diverts our attention from the current project and when we get distracted, even for a moment; it takes several minutes to regain our focus. Distractions, large or small, kill productivity and the main task i.e. the completion of the WHOLE project is hampered.
Towards the end, we sometimes feel less energetic and stressed out and when the situation demands our utmost focus and control, we seem lost.  I would probably attribute this to burning out caused by excessive stress and pressure conditions during the various phases of the project cycle. We expend energy too much too soon and feel rather snowed under as the end approaches.
In a project scenario we work overtime to control the schedules, avoid taking any leaves despite the fact that they actually help us reenergise, and fail to develop clear boundaries between work and personal life. As a result, when we reach completion, we feel enervated and helpless to handle stress and it becomes difficult to proceed with the same speed.
I think for successfully finishing a long race in a given timeframe we need to control both these factors, we need to spend our energy carefully and focus on the present rather than dreaming about future.