• How to prepare for PMP exam in 60 days

    Do you think of taking the PMP exam? Awesome! Do you know how to plan your preparation for the test? Here I’m going to share the plan of how to get prepared for the PMP exam in 60 days.

    PMP exam = your own project


    To begin with, let’s clarify: you’re ready to work hard and to follow the plan. Otherwise, this journey will take you forever. The key here is to perceive the PMP exam as your personal project and manage it like you're managing projects for your clients. The difference here is that you are your client yourself; and you are the resource to release this project. What is more, you will need not only to plan this project, but to execute the plan yourself too. On one hand, it will add an additional challenge. On the other hand, it will make things even more exciting to get them done.

    What do you need to launch this project? First of all, the input data. This is actually what you usually need to start a project. I’m talking about the key performance indicators that we consider while planning a project. They are time, scope and budget. Of course, funds are important. As you have decided to take the test and to pass the certification you should be aware of the process: how much the test costs, how much the course costs, and other relevant expenses. Therefore, let’s move directly to the time and scope.

    Time


    You have 60 days in order to get prepared for the PMP exam, and that is why you need to define how much time you are able to allocate to get prepared for the tests daily.

    Yes, daily, because 60 days is quite an intense period. I know that for some people it takes six months or even a year to get prepared for this test. However, the less period of time you have, the more advantages you finally get.

    Here is the thing, for the PMP there is no shortcut. It is quite a big volume of knowledge that you need to obtain in order to pass this test.
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  • The secret of managing a remote team: 6 tips for CTOs

      The coronavirus pandemic has triggered many changes in human life. One of the new trends is that billions of people are moving into remote working mode. This requires new approaches to speed up unprecedented digital and organizational transformation, which aims to preserve human capital as the main business asset during the crisis.

      According to Josh Bersin, a leading world-renowned HR analyst, and Diane Gerson, IBM's top HR manager, which they gave the recent joint webinar, at this time of crisis the rescue of companies will fall on the shoulders of HR directors, as once, in 2008, companies were obliged to the rescue of their CFOs.

      Vitaly Kukharenko — entrepreneur, experienced professional in the field of artificial intelligence, one of the founders of the popular language platform and brain training startup, shares his experience and gives recommendations in the field of remote working group management.
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    • 11 Agile Project Management Best Practices

        The Agile method of project management focuses on the repetitive development of the product. Each iteration starts with better input. Although initially intended for software development, the Agile methodology is now being adopted rapidly in other industries too.


        At the core of the Agile methodology are sprints or cycles, which are small development time frames focusing on the continuous improvement of the development process and/or product. It involves sub-tasks that must be completed within the specified time period.


        Since the project management industry is going gaga over the Agile methodology, it is an apt time to learn the Agile methodology. Agile best practices help in further enhancing the effectiveness of the project management technique. Here are 11 of the best ones:


        1. Employ Relevant Project Management Software


        This goes without saying, using project management tools surely benefit a project no matter what the methodology or methodologies involved are. They can take care of everything ranging from file management and feedback collection to tracking progress and reporting.

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      • Self-Development: How I Couldn't Wear Two Hats and Found Third One



          Hi all! I lead antispam team and several machine learning teams at Mail.ru Group. The subject of this article is self-development for team leads/managers. But in reality many techniques and recipes do not depend on the role at all. This really concerns me because machine learning is developing extremely fast, and it takes a lot of time to stay up to date. So the question about what should be done for development and how is quite topical.

          Of course, the content of this article is not the ultimate truth but just a description of the results of my continuing quest. It tells about approaches based on books and workshops, trials and errors, which have worked for me. It'll be good to have a discussion with you in comments.
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        • How to Wrap Up a Software Development Project the Right Way

          Does the New Year have you scrambling to wrap up last year’s software development projects? Don’t archive your Jira tickets and Trello boards too quickly!

          A good rule of thumb in software development is that your next software project should always be better than your last. Why? Because the lessons you learn and take away from each project should be continuously documented and applied in future projects.

          In the words of Rachel Green, every good project should end with closure.

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          Follow this quick and easy 6-step guide to ensure that you wrap up your software project efficiently and effectively.

          6 Steps for Successfully Wrapping up a Software Development Project


          1. Document future needs

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        • 700 Employees and Multiple Continents: How Alconost Built an Officeless Business Model



            We decided to take the «no-fixed-office» route from the very beginning of our company. For a boutique translation agency focused on the IT industry and working remotely with clients, this seemed like a natural fit. 15 years later, Alconost has over 700 employees spread across the globe, including translators, marketing professionals, PPC advertising experts, sales staff, editors, localization managers, and video production whizzes. And, still, we think an office isn’t the most effective way to operate. As one of the company’s co-founders, I can share just how we managed this.

            Not having an office makes the most positive impact on business growth

            Our clients are located throughout the world, and our managers often have to send emails outside of normal business hours. When you’re dealing with major time differences, problems could easily take days to resolve. But not for us. Our employees aren’t bound by the limits of the standard 8-hour workday, and we can count on them to respond to emails and queries promptly whenever possible. Getting a quick response is key — even if it’s just to hear “I’ll look into this and get back to you tomorrow.” It’s a win-win: the client feels better and we’re happy.

            We like the officeless life not because it allows us to take our time. In fact, it’s the opposite, and we can clock our turnaround times in minutes, not hours. Half of the orders made via our online translation platform — Nitro — are delivered in less than 2 hours. And anyone who emails us with questions or inquiries about Nitro can count on a reply within an hour. This kind of response time simply isn’t possible with fixed office hours.

            Written by Alconost
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          • How to Become a Leading Scrum Master and Rock the Team?

              Scrum allows Agile teams working on complex projects and delivering winning products by solving problems adaptively. This popular straightforward method is widely used to handle projects and get things done. Scrum projects more accurately fulfill customers' needs because they encourage continuous feedback.

              There is no need for detailed analytics to understand that Scrum continues to grow in popularity just because of its many benefits and general effectiveness. And the important merit in this belongs to a Scrum Master. In this post, we extol and praise the role of a Scrum Master, without which no Scrum project succeeds.

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            • 12 Soft Skills That Make IT Project Managers Unstoppable

                The increasingly competitive job market demonstrates that performing only based on hard skills alone is no longer sufficient. In project management reality, hard skills contain creating work breakdown structures, managing a project budget, earned value assessments and critical path charts. All these skills require technical background and applying professional knowledge and tools to perform well. What are the soft skills of leadership and how they help to uncover project managers' facilities?

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              • 5 Activities to Accelerate Problem Solving in Any IT Team

                  Every manager knows what it is like to solve a problem. This is a daily activity for many people and it usually leads to the best outcomes. If you ignore or admit problems in your business, competitors can quickly pass you and your company will hang behind.

                  Any action that is aimed to solve a problem should identify this particular problem and its causes. Understanding the causes, you'll be able to set priorities and choose alternatives for the best solution, as well as directly implement this solution. The ability to solve internal and external problems timely and make responsible decisions is what managers should learn from the very start of their career. In this article, we’ll identify powerful problem-solving activities and analyze some effective techniques and exercises for teamwork.

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                • 10 Books on Agile Project Management Worth Taking With You in 2020

                  • Translation
                  Books with the word «Agile» in their titles began to appear on the shelves of IT experts and other industries' professionals after 2001. The term was used during the declaration of the Agile Software Development Manifesto. Agile describes a software development methodology that is characterized by short life cycles leading to frequent product releases.

                  Today this iterative or incremental method affects various aspects of development and business including project management. What are the best sources to learn Agile? This post covers 10 powerful books that may enhance the skills of project managers and their teams.

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                • 10 Reasons to Apply Kanban Boards as a Current Software Development Trend

                    It is not always easy to find out the right path in development processes (as in other business activities). Various obstructions may disturb. The future life of any product or service depends on choosing an appropriate development methodology. As Kanban is often named as one of the current trends in project management, here we gathered the most essential benefits of Kanban software development and applying convenient Kanban boards and cards. Just to be trendy ;)

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                  • How Scrumban Unites the Best of Kanban and Scrum Methodologies

                      In any business, it’s not a good practice to constantly switch from one methodology to another. Most software development teams prefer to work with one-defined project management method. However, there are lots of companies who try to combine the best features and practices of different methods to create their own unique approach.

                      In this post, you will learn some basic facts about Scrumban and how to combine two popular Agile methodologies – Kanban and Scrum to make this hybrid approach perform better.

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                    • What are the Types of Scrum Ceremonies and Their Best Practices?

                        Scrum includes a series of special meetings, commonly referred to ceremonies, which assist to facilitate all the methodology’s processes.

                        Scrum strongly enforces the goals and time boxes for everything, including the ceremonies. This post covers these outstanding events and identifies the goals for each as well as their necessity. Take 7-8 minutes to figure them out.

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                      • Scrum vs Kanban: Keep Calm and Choose What Suits You Better

                          When it comes to choosing between two options, there is always a risk to be influenced by opinions and dubious facts. Selecting any methodology or work approach, we strive to avoid mistakes and study as many facts and details about the subject as possible to make the right choice.

                          In Agile software development, this choice is also challenging, especially if it's about Scrum and Kanban.

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                        • 9 Types of Collaboration Software Solutions for Managing Agile Teams

                            One of the most effective factors for improving any business is the ability of its employees to perform together as a team. Managers should not only improve their professional skills, learn new methodologies, apply innovative growth hacks, but also try their best to build strong and effective teams. It's all about strong collaboration that is achieved not only through daily face-to-face communication but also through professional online collaboration tools.

                            Here's the list of tools' types, that you may need for your Agile team’s best performing. Take a look and see if you're missing anything.

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                          • Product Manager vs Project Manager: How to Avoid Confusion?

                              Large companies and big teams always consist of various strategic departments and roles. Therefore, it's not a rare case when people face confusion in understanding some job positions.

                              Is it always clear to understand what the key responsibilities of different managers within one team are? For example, the roles of a product manager and a project manager have much in common. Supposedly, one of these PM’s have heard at least once in life the cheesy question «Is there any difference at all?" However, do not hurry to blame and shame the people who confuse their functionality. Product Manager and Project Manager are completely different roles. The goal of this post is to define clear differences between two strategic positions in software development companies to keep you out of all doubt.

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                            • 15 Must-Have Tools for Product Managers in 2019

                                The main objective of any product manager is to ensure the process of product management runs smoothly and flawlessly: from the concept to release. However, it's all about the ideal world.

                                In order to present a brilliant product to the world, it is important to learn how to use convenient and multifunctional online tools that facilitate management and open up new opportunities for managers, expanding their professional horizons. In this article, you will find 15 smart tools that contribute to the professional success of product managers in 2019.

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                              • How to Maximize the Value of Product Backlog Grooming?

                                  The Agile methodology consists of various mandatory concepts and artifacts. A product backlog is one of them. This is actually a set of requirements received from the business and formulated in the form of development tasks.

                                  Backlog grooming is not a magic wand; it's a comprehensive activity aimed to ensure that all the tasks are always in clear order. How can the grooming process be improved? And what are the special things about it?

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