ITIL v3 Expert – Wait Another Day

Went to take my final ITIL v3 certification exam today.  Unfortunately, I waited too long from the time the exam was arranged and when I finally got myself to the testing center.  Testing window expired.  Between tackling a couple weeks of instructing PMP classes, wearing makeup, and other work related activities, I did not get there in time.

Haha, seeing if you were paying attention.  Yes, you read that right.  I had to wear makeup!  Not something I do often. Nor do I plan to make it a regular work activity (not ruling out personal use, but a seemingly unlikely occurrence).  I had to wear a dab of makeup for a filming session this past week.  With the lights, cameras, and reflecting white skin – some of that shine had to be calmed down.  The application of makeup was the answer.

When the final production is edited and posted, I will direct you to it.  Filming yourself instructing a course is far different than presenting it live to an audience.  Being an energetic presenter, I am moving around the room and drawing on the board.  Can’t do that in a filming session.  Actions had to be dialed down.  Once I got accustomed to that – not forgetting to mention “talking to a camera” – things went pretty smoothly.  I may have another opportunity soon.  I am looking forward to it.  Not that acting is anywhere in my career horizons!

Anyway, life and work gets in the way.  My pursuit of finalizing my ITIL v3 Expert status waits another day.  Should be all ready to go next week.  May need to review my materials.  Maybe that it is a good thing.  Have not looked back over them in a few weeks.  Not that it changes.  Best to keep it fresh in the mind though.

PRINCE2, SCRUM, CPLP – certifications, oh my!

As a Project Management Professional – PMP® – I am curious about the other certifications for project management recognized worldwide.  I have gathered a few of the materials for PRINCE2 and CompTia Project+.  Both seem fairly close to the PMBOK® (which I was a contributor for) and the PMP Exam items.  Although, I am not too surprised, since they are all based on generally accepted practices.

Naturally in job searches and in presenting myself/courseware, the more verification via certification the better.  Although, I am pondering whether or not gathering more certification revolving around the same basic concept is worth pursuing.  Does more = better?  Diversity valued?  Overload?  Extensive  knowledge about all approaches better than one (or none) with track record of work experience?

I am leaning on the side of “knowledge is power”.  Although, this verification of knowledge is costly.  Counting the THOUSANDS of dollars spent on acquiring PMP and 6 ITIL certifications, do I really need to cough up more?  Haven’t I spent enough?

Yes, it is a costly game played.  Alas, so is formal education.  I certainly spent a great deal more in my undergraduate and Masters degrees.  I spent many more thousands just in my first quarter of my Doctoral work at Seattle Pacific University than I spent achieving various certifications.  Maybe that is something to be said for certifications – cheaper, faster, and often more relative.  Certainly more cost effective.  I enjoyed pursing my Doctorate.  But the sticker shock was too great.  No student loans.  No short term pay back period.  No reason for me to continue my formal studies.

Consequently, that brings me back to my original point – do I pile on the certifications?  Potentially adding the proverbial alphabet soup after my name.  Adding related certifications is a lot like learning a new language.  The first one is the most difficult.  The ensuing one gets assimilated  faster and with more ease.  And the pattern continues; save for occasionally interchanging a wrong term or syntax from time-to-time.

Once I claim my ITIL v3 Expert designation – as soon as I clear the MACL capstone exam – I plan to tackle more certs.  The practice CompTia Project+ exam I took was a breeze.  It was so similar to the PMP.  The PRINCE2 does not seem much of a stretch.  Especially considering the language comparisons with ITIL.  Add on the M_o_R – seemingly another reasonable certification with my production and research of Risk Management topics.  Hm, but where from there?  SCRUM?  CBAP? PMP-Risk? 6 Sigma? COBIT? MOF?  CPLP? Doesn’t matter.  There are certainly enough to keep me busy!  I’ll do my best to document my travels.

Conducting a class in DC next week

Balancing ITIL study prep for my ITIL Expert exam, securing jobs, and preparing to instruct PMP and ITIL classes next week, it has been a busy week. I do promise to publish more.  Especially on my attempts on the ITIL Expert exam (Managing Across the Lifecycle).

If you are in the DC area the week of April 5 and are interested in either a Project Management Professional (PMP) certification exam prep class or an ITIL Foundations prep class, send me an email: neal@theitilcrowd.com

Otherwise, look for another post soon.  Cheers!

Final Stab at CSI

I did it! I finally cleared all the ITIL® v. 3 Intermediate Lifecycle certification exams! CSI (Continual Service Improvement) was the one causing me headaches. Failed it before. But now have passed it with distinction. That would make all 5 certifications passed with distinction.

Now only Managing Across the Lifecycle exam remains. This is the capstone that pulls all the ITIL principles in place. Upon passing that exam, I will finally reach the designation of ITIL v. 3 Expert!

I’ll keep you posted.

Tackling the Remainder of the ITIL Intermediate Stream

One of the big decisions you need to make is whether you are going to go primarily down the LIFECYCLE stream or the CAPABILITIES stream.  Ok, it’s not that big of a decision.  Not like buying a car or which ice cream you are going to order.  Well, it is a little less costly – barely – than buying a car; and more life affecting than choosing your ice cream flavor [side note: I tried Pumpkin ice cream the other day – pretty good!].

Covered in another post and podcast [to be attached here soon], the ITIL certification schema has layers.  All must do the Foundations and the Managing Across the Lifecycle exams.  But in the middle it is a little more squishy.  More squishy if you eat a lot of ice cream.

You must gain 15 intermediate credits.  Many place themselves in one of the 2 camps: Lifecycle or Capabilities.  You don’t have place yourself strictly in one camp or the other. You may pick and choose.  Although, I did.  I am firmly placed in one camp.

The different streams are based on different mindsets or purposes, if you will.  They represent a different approach.  A different angle to the ITIL framework.  Lifecycle’s path more ‘management’ focused.  Capabilities more ‘practitioner’ focused.

I am in the management mind.  I am collecting the certifications under the lifecycle stream: SS, SD, ST, SO, and CSI.  Means I must do all 5 (if I don’t cross over) to acquire my full 15 Intermediate credits.  My intentions are to continue viewing IT Service management and ITIL practices in the more holistic views.  Seeing the picture.  Seeing where it is best applied.

Coming from a more strategic, business, and project management background, this was an easy choice for me.  You may have a tougher choice.  Depending on where you have been and where you wish to go.  If you want to be the ones executing the best practices and have background in the trenches, go capabilities.  If you see yourself defining strategy, determining broader applications, go lifecycle.

In any case, they all meet up again in the MALC capstone exam.  See you at the top