Opening Day!

PM City is now open! After more than 8 months of designing and constructing the best project management online learning experience from the ground up, PM City is now open for business!

PMP City with process groups

PM City is the amazing new interactive online course development exclusively for the 6th edition of the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) and the Project Management Professional PMP certification exam. PM City is a production of The Crowd Training http://www.thecrowdtraining.com/pm6 and is available at crowd.myabsorb.com for only $720 for a lifetime subscription. [Or use the coupon code thisistheyear to get the entire course for $201.80 USD]

PM City is fully online and self paced. The e-learning course fulfills the 35 hour project management requirement for the PMP application from PMI. The Project Management Institute accepts the certificate of completion from The Crowd Training’s PM City course.

PM City can be used as your complete course or as a supplement to your other in person training or self study.

Dev PMP Process Screen Example

Everyone learns differently. As such, not all project management courses should be presented and delivered in all the same ways. This course was envisioned to purposely shake up the project management training industry. The tired method of having PM instructors read over their dull and plain PowerPoint slides is ineffective. Recording someone stand there or sit in front of their webcam talking at you for hours is not much better. Sitting there passively while someone lectures to you for hours is not a pedagogically sound approach to teaching. And in our modern society with the advancements of technology there is no reason to force an approach that is only meaningful to a few onto the masses. That is why The Crowd Training wanted to create something effective for the masses.

Comm Game Example

As you become more engaged and active in your learning, the more it sticks. That stickiness is extremely important as you are taking a high stakes, high cost exam. There is too much on the line to spend time on training that does not match your learning style. No one wants to retake the exam at any cost. You want to pass the first time and obtain that highly valued Project Management Professional distinction. That is what I set out to make for you.

Beginning with my own study and preparation for the PMP Exam over 13 years ago, I observed how almost every training course or book out there was boring and fairly dry. It consisted primarily of someone lecturing to you for hours. In my case in particular, there were no PowerPoints or whiteboards or flipcharts of any kind. It was hours, upon hours, of someone dumping all that he knew about the PMP exam at us. After 9 – 10 hours a day of dumping information on us, there was not much sticking. Actually, I don’t think much was sticking post-lunch.

To overcome the assaulting barrage of project management talk I drew pictures, made sketches, created mind maps, took notes, and otherwise made sense of the drone of words. As a visual learner, I need to see it. A picture is worth a thousand words. And I had to make a few hundred pictures a day to keep up. Those pictures became the cornerstone of my project management training delivery for years. I still have past students to this day saying how my graphics and drawings have stuck with them years after they passed the PMP exam.

Risk with sharks When it came time to finally have the technology to not only present my drawings to PMP learners, but to provide an online manner for learners to engage and control their learning, I was so excited to be able to offer such a product. I dedicated hours and sleep to sketch out my vision of how project management training could be. I wanted it to be accessible and on demand. I wanted online learning not to be a chore or something “they have to get through”. I wanted it to be meaningful and sticky.

After months of laying out all the neighborhoods [a.k.a. knowledge areas and concept blocks of project management] and constructing all their elements, I am proud to announce that PM City is open! It took so much effort to envision new ways of presenting the content, illustrating material, recording audio that was conversational and approachable, animating my drawings and my voice, and bringing the project management content to life. But even more than that, it required the technical capabilities to make the true control and interactivity possible. Every box clicked had to trigger some action or reaction. Voiceovers had to play only when the user wished them to play. Navigation was not to be linear, which requires more code to connect the dots and allow the learner to return to content they wish to repeat as often as they wished without needing to hunt and peek through hours of video footage.

end of process screenshot

PM City is truly an awesome new way to study and prepare for the Project Management Professional certification exam. And the best practices of learning does not stop there! To meld the best online PMP training with the tried and true success of the in person instructor led classroom, The Crowd Training is offering a series of “Power Prep PMP Weekend” classes. These weekend PMP training sessions augment the online learning content. By combining the advantages of both the online training and the off line face-to-face training, you get the best of both worlds. Best of all, you don’t have to take away any time from work. The online learning is done on demand and on your time and choosing. The in person classroom is only one weekend! A condensed, powerful weekend to meet with instructors and fellow PMP candidates to ask questions, take practice mock exams, and extend your learning.

These Power Prep courses are scheduled in select cities throughout the United States in 2018 starting with San Diego the weekend of March 17 – 18, 2018. Here the link to hold your spot AND get full access to the awesome online PMP prep content: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/6th-edition-pmbok-pmp-exam-power-prep-weekend-course-san-diego-tickets-38457688983

It is a winning combination! What are you waiting for? Don’t live in the Southern California area? There are other options in 2018, as well as getting your key to PM City. Become a PMP Citizen and get learning!

Reddit Conversation

In discussions on Reddit about my kickstarter project page, some had suggested that I look at reducing my costs and using free or reduced cost offerings. I appreciate the suggestions and the ideas. Alas, I have looked into those options and many do not work. As such, my online project management course is going to a more expensive infrastructure to deliver it to those that enroll.

I looked into many options. If I was building the traditional “instructor-talking-at-the-students” type of online training course, then many of the resources out there would work. I don’t want to deliver that form of instruction. Having professors drone on and on in person rarely works well – especially in highly technical content like the Project Management Professional PMP exam – in person; it is even worse online.

Trying to retain the attention of the learner for 35 – 45 minutes at a time while they passively sit staring at their computer screen may not be the most effective and efficient use of their time and exam preparation. The computer is far too distracting. Facebook, Twitter, instant messages, the web, etc. are just too tempting. They are like sirens begging you to sway. These temptations are hard enough in a classroom when there are others around noticing what you are doing. Remove the instructor or any type of peer pressure or authority, you are kidding yourself if you think the learner is not going to give into any of those temptations. Sure there may be a really dedicated student. But I argue those are rare. They are the minority. They are the most successful and for a reason. The vast majority of others are not going to ignore that email or text that comes in. Few are going to stay focused. Most that shift attention to the email or text that comes in are not going to stop the guy or lady talking on the screen. When they return to the lecture, they may be lost, they are going to need time to catch up. They may even be forced to rewind the video. And scrolling and hassling with a video play bar is not efficient and annoying use of one’s learning time.

Hence, I am passionate about making something – even if just incrementally – better. It takes more thought, energy, and resources [read: costs]. In the end I think it will be worth it for the thousands upon thousands of individuals that study for and attempt to pass the PMP exam every year. Please take a look at my Kickstarter page: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/thecrowdtraining/interactive-project-management-course
ks screenshot

Here is my latest response on the PMP subreddit: https://www.reddit.com/r/pmp/comments/7acjcr/kickstarter_pmp_interactive_online_course/

I have tried Udemy and it sucks. They take half of your fee. And they give away coupons to lower the value of your work even further without any input of yours. So a PMP class that should be valued at $200 is reduced to $10 by Udemy, then they take half of that! So the person and teams that did all the work only get $5 from a class that is worth far more.
Plus Udemy only has video based lecture courses. I am building something interactive and engaging. The online courses on Udemy are just people talking over their slides or paying actors to read a script (I know because I wrote scripts for some of the other companies out there).
I know that blazing a new trail and trying to bring more dynamic project management online courses to the world is going to cost me more and make my courses cost more, but that is the price of quality and good work. Interactive online courses cannot work with all the options you mentioned – I wish they did, it would save me a lot of money. If I was just going to talk at you thru my video camera for 35 hours straight, then yes I would definitely go with the resources your suggestion. Although, I am aiming to bring out something better and long term. I am building it for 6th edition (I was a contributor to earlier versions of the PMBOK) and plan to support PMP candidates for many years to come.
If you want to see some of the games I made thus far, go to http://www.thecrowdtraining.com/games I’ll give you a 90 day subscription of $10 (like the Udemy pricing you mentioned) if you use code Reddit.
Thank you for the great discussion. I appreciate your input. I am open to more of your thoughts and discussions. It helps make a better product and help more project managers.