Regardless of which industry you happen to be in, there are definite advantages attached to the goal of achieving Project Management Professional (PMP) certification and one of those could be a noticeable uplift in your career prospects, not to mention the increase in salary that goes with that promotion.
The concept behind PMP Exam Certification is not just the professional development angle that offers you a chance to climb the corporate ladder a bit higher but also the fact that it should show you how to improve the performance of your organization together with the ability to meet deadlines and deliver a project within budget.
Now that you know what the advantages are for passing the PMP exam here are some pointers on how to achieve that highly-prized certification success.
Use the guide book in the right way
One of the first things to say is that it would be a good idea to use the official study guide (PMBOK) in a way that will help your studying rather than hinder it.
The guide is packed full of terminology that might be alien to you at this point in your learning journey and this means that you would not be the first person to find it hard to understand everything being presented to you.
A good tip would be to treat the guide as a reference source rather than part of the study course itself.
Taking that approach should that you don’t get overwhelmed by an information overload at such an early stage of your studies in preparation for the exam ahead.
Understanding the structure of the exam
Knowing how you are going to be tested when it comes to taking the PMP exam will make a big difference in how you prepare for the task.
The PMP exam is based around testing you on five key areas across a broad spectrum of subject areas.
A good tip would be to break down your studying into covering these five domains and test yourself at the end of each one to see if you have consumed enough information or need to go back and revisit a few topics.
Create your own bespoke study plan and use that as your blueprint for success when the time comes to sit the exam.
Be mindful that PMP is more about the concept
It is important to note that you would be better served learning how to apply the concepts attached to project management rather than learning the terminology behind it.
Obviously, you will need to have a basic grounding of the various terms but you should also be mindful that the practical exam you will undertake will take the shape of applying the various concepts and theories to a realistic scenario.
Knowing the conceptual basis of PMP is really only half the story and your preparation for the exam should be focused on learning how to apply what you know to a specific problem presented to you.
Take the help being offered to you
For many of us, the thought of being put under the spotlight in an exam situation is quite daunting, however well prepared you are for the challenge.
You can actually get guidance and useful information relating to the PMP certification exam on the relevant study website and it makes a lot of sense to view some typical practice questions beforehand so that you have more of an idea what to expect when you take the exam for real.
Consider a certification prep course
The ultimate aim is to see you through the exam and gain your accreditation and that is why there are options available to you that could enhance your chances of success.
Studying hard and working your way through the course is clearly what you are going to have to do in order to be prepared but another option that is worth considering is the idea of subscribing to an exam prep course.
You will be able to find a suitable certification preparation course and it may well prove to be the case that spending valuable hours in the presence of a qualified instructor makes all the difference in terms of getting you over the line and passing.
Learn how to manage your time
Nothing instills a feeling of panic in an exam situation than being faced with a fixed number of questions that you need to answer within what seems to be a much shorter space of time than you anticipated.
The PMP gives you a four-hour window to answer a couple of hundred questions and if you take too long on one or two of those it is going to put you well behind, which could cause you to start sweating whether you are going to get to the end in time.
Learn how to answer each question in about a minute or less and that should prepare you for performing under the added stress of exam conditions.
Have a plan in place for the big day
Everything you are doing in terms of studying is leading up to the day of reckoning when you are going to be tested on what you know and the way to be ready is to have a plan.
Create a checklist of things you need to take with you for the exam and make sure you know how much time you will need to arrive at the test center in plenty of time.
Having all these details written down beforehand will allow you to execute an exam-day plan that allows you to focus on the exam itself rather than anything else.
Learn some relaxation techniques
It is perfectly normal to experience some anxiety when you are being subjected to the scrutiny of exam conditions and a good strategy to help you stay calm and focused is to learn some relaxation and breathing techniques.
Train your mind to relax so that you can achieve the level of concentration that comes when you are in control of your body.
If you can take some of these tips and strategies on board it should help enhance your prospects of getting the qualification that will see you take the next step forward in your career progression.