Early 2019 an initiative was launched to start a Study Group (SG) within the PMI Belgium Chapter related to the PMI Program Management (PgMP) certification track. The SG initiative was not meant to replace formal training but as a sounding board for PgM discussions and also as a motivator to continue preparing for (and finally taking) the exam.
The approach was twofold: first introduce the concepts of Program Management and then guide the attendees through the content of the Standard for Program Management 4th Edition (SPM).
The SG started in the month of May with 9 members in the group. Following the “study group” concept, we first got to know each other including the expectations and availability of each of us. We started planning sessions on a weekly basis but remained flexible when certain dates were impossible (including holiday periods).
As mentioned earlier, we first discussed the principles behind the PMI methodology of Program Management followed by tips and tricks related to the application, the eligibility requirements for the exam and my own experience in taking the exam.
Then we moved to the concepts described in the SPM structured following the different chapters. Each participant presented a chapter for the others, leaving room for questions, discussions, etc. Each session was concluded with some exam practice questions. When an attendee was not able to attend a session, a recording of the session was made available to them together with the presentation.
Although we finished the last session with only 4 members, the SG has been perceived as being successful. The motivation in preparing and studying the SPM would probably be the most appreciated added value for the participants.