Prep for PMP Exam: Veteran’s Gritty Story – Subhasish Bhattacharya, PMP

prep for pmp exam subhasish
It’s not easy to make a shift from Services to Corporate world. And Subhasish Bhattacharya did it rather nicely. But then he figured just the technical skills will not be sufficient for the edge he needed. With a natural flair for project management he took up PMP certification exam. The adversaries he faced would unnerve anyone, but with his pure grit and determination he got his PMP.

Subhasish’s prep for PMP exam is both inspiring and helpful, with bagful of amazing PMP insights. Don’t miss it for the world.

Subhasish Bhattacharya is a retired Air Force Personnel. He worked in the Air Force for 20 years. Post retirement from Services he is working in an IT Company. Subhasish is a specialist in Citrix, Azure Cloud besides PMP and PRINCE2.

-Shiv Shenoy

The PMP trigger

pmp-subhasishAfter working for several years in technical field and taking up management role, I was thinking about how could I enhance my career.

It was the summer of 2018 that I realized that I needed to proceed with Project Management since I was already playing the same role in my organization. That was the time my manager, who is also a PMP, encouraged to go for it. I did some research and decided to pursue the same.

My study resources

I did only study PMBOK, Shiv’s email course and his Ace PMP Exam book series on Kindle. For me it was enough.

Study plan

I actually studied for 5 weeks altogether.

In the first week, I realized that the PMBOK is written in a different style and the real Project happens in a different way. So I decided to move as the way the Project runs and thus follow Process-wise movement.

I also tried to visualize a Project is being run and I am observing it from a 5000 ft height. This gave me enough confidence.

I was not going too much in the ITTOs and decided to understand the big picture and then zoom in each of the Knowledge areas and tried to connect the dots in the story that I was building in my mind.

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Blockers, and more

I lost my both the parents while I was preparing. Besides, I also lost job during the same time. So, It was even tougher for me to move on.

I decided to move on with the PMP since I thought that was the only bet that I can put while searching for the new opportunity. I got distracted many a times and even things were getting tougher as days were closing to my test date.

I kept telling myself that this was a project for me and once I started, I have to close it by any means. By the grace of God, I finally closed the project and got my PMP.

Also read: 7 Project Management Best Practices to Fuel Your PM Career!

The week prior to the exam

I kept on answering practice questions as much as I could.

The last day before the exam, I decided to not study too much. The only thing I did was to go through the Work Flow diagrams those are available in each of the chapter.

I tried to internalize the commentary on each of the points in the work flow diagram.

My PMP exam experience

The questions were tough and I never saw those questions in my preparation.

On each of the questions, I tried to visualize the Project that I created in my mind during the preparation and that gave me enough confidence to answer each of the questions. I am glad that I did that and it helped me tremendously.

Also read: Step-by-step PMP exam prep strategy that Abhishek used to pass his exam!

PMP study tips

While preparing, I practiced to read the questions (including the options) in reverse way.

First I would read the options and then I would start from the last sentence of the questions and then try to answer the question. If that would not help, I would read the next sentence in the reverse order and kept on going till I answer the question.

This way, I could answer 30% of questions by just reading the last sentence of the questions. And then about 30% of the questions by reading the last two sentences of the question.

This tactic helped me hugely and I could complete all the questions within 2 hours and 45 min. I did not revisit the questions since I knew whatever the questions I was doubtful initially I would still be doubtful.

Overall, PMP preparation and the exam was a great learning experience for me.

I wish you all the best as you prepare for your exam.

Enjoy the process,

Subhasish Bhattacharya, PMP


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