In Technology, there's no substitute for experience. However, certifications remain a valuable tool for advancing one's career. Employers want candidates with up-to-date knowledge and skills, and certifications demonstrate a person’s mastery of the respective subject. Eleven certifications emerged as the most valuable in Technology and two of them are related to project management.  
These are the most highly valued technology certifications today:
1. Certified ScrumMaster (CSM) 2. AWS Certified Solutions Architect 3. Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) 4. Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) 5. Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) 6. Cisco Certified Network Professional (CCNP) 7. CompTIA A+ 8. Global Information Assurance Certification (GIAC) 9. ITIL 10. Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure 11. Project Management Professional (PMP)
If you're interested in learning about the project management related certifications, visit the Scrum Alliance for the Certified ScrumMaster (CSM) and the Project Management Institute for the Project Management Professional (PMP).
Many employers prefer to hire certified professionals, especially those who also have college degrees and successful work experience to accompany them. Those who invest in professional credentials typically enjoy larger salaries among other benefits.
I had the honor and pleasure of speaking to a highly-engaged audience at an event of the California Inland Empire chapter of the Project Management Institute (PMICIE) on February 16, 2019. My presentation was titled "How to Deliver Your Projects with Faster ROI, Competitive Advantage, and Additional Benefits Using Agile Scrum."
Thank you to everyone who attended the event. Special thanks to Stacey Wong, Vice President of Programs for the PMICIE, and William Parris, President of the PMICIE, for inviting me back. This was my second talk at the chapter. For more information on the PMICIE, please visit their website at https://pmicie.org.
Typically, many things need to be in place and go right in order for change (such as a project) to be successful. Based on the Knoster Model for Managing Complex Change, the image above identifies five elements—vision, skills, incentives, resources, and action plan—which are required for effective change. As shown, without all five components, the outcome is less than successful. You may find the model to be helpful when thinking about a new project.
A higher resolution version of the Change Management Model image is available here. ★★★★★
Project management traditionally focuses on tactical work such as the detailed planning and execution of tasks. Strategic work deals with the business reasons for doing projects. Tactical and strategic concerns are often compartmentalized and handled separately.
However, project management professionals are increasingly addressing a combination of both. They're thinking strategically while concurrently executing projects tactically, and that approach helps facilitate short- and long-term success.
Our partners at Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions have a downloadable infographic which covers the topic of thinking strategically and acting tactically for project management success. The file is located here. ★★★★★
The Book Excellence Awards features Scott M. Graffius, author of Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions, in a story. The article highlights factors contributing to the book's success — including credit to Chris Hare and Colin Giffen, the technical editors on the publication. You can check out the story at https://www.bookexcellenceawards.com/scott-graffius-success-story.
I had the pleasure of speaking to a highly-engaged audience of startups and others in the entrepreneurial community at the Techstars Startup Week in the Inland Empire on Thursday, October 4th. My talk was on agile project management. It covered Scrum—including the roles, responsibilities, tools, and techniques unique to the framework—with a focus on best practices and top factors in typical successful implementations. Benefits such as rapid adaptation to change, fast time-to-market, and continuous improvement were incorporated in the talk as well.
Thank you to everyone who attended the event. Special thanks to Steve Massa and all of the conference organizers, Michael Ring for managing the control booth/ops in the theater, andLara Phillips for the excellent photographs of the event. Here's the link to the home page for the Techstars Startup Week conference: https://ie.startupweek.co. ★★★★★
I had the honor of speaking on agile project management at a dinner meeting of the Project Management Institute - California Central Valley Chapter (PMI-CCVC) in Bakersfield last night. The presentation provided a highly visual overview of Scrum — including the roles, responsibilities, tools, and techniques unique to the framework — with a focus on best practices and top factors typical in successful implementations.
Thank you to Fred Valenzano for the invitation and thank you to all of the PMI-CCVC members who attended the session. I enjoyed meeting and talking with everyone.
The feedback was fantastic. For those not at the event: an example of a sticky note used to collect comments at the end of the meeting is shown (the example is a blank one — not filled out — for privacy). It's excellent to know "What Went Well?" Potential improvements, however, typically come from the other question: "What Would You Change?" (Additionally, attendees can provide feedback via an online survey.) All of the feedback is important, appreciated, and valued.
Scott M. Graffius, CEO of Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions™, will be speaking at Techstars Startup Week. He will be presenting "Agile Scrum Helps Innovators, Disruptors, and Entrepreneurs Develop and Deliver Products at Astounding Speed Which Drives Competitive Advantage." The talk will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, October 4, 2018 at The Box Riverside (also known as The Box Theater) in Riverside, CA. For more information and to register for the event, please visit https://ie.startupweek.co. Techstars Startup Week provides presentations, workshops, events, and mentoring sessions designed to inspire, educate, and advance startups and others in the local entrepreneurial community.
Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions™ helps organizations achieve their strategic objectives and business initiatives via world-class project management. The firm provides expert advisory, training, and facilitative consulting services related to project, program, portfolio, and PMO management in agile, traditional/waterfall, and hybrid development and delivery frameworks.
Scott M. Graffius will present “Agile Scrum: An Overview (Originally) for The Board of Directors of an Entertainment Company” at a public event of the Project Management Institute California Central Valley Chapter (PMI-CCVC) on September 13, 2018. His talk provides a vibrant and highly visual overview of Scrum, the most popular agile framework for the development and delivery of products and services. For more information and to register for the event, visit here.