Hello, I’m Natarshia, a advertising and marketing supervisor with a front-row view of learners in our neighborhood and their journey to changing into licensed. However I’m additionally a lifelong learner myself. As I work towards my Mission Administration Skilled (PMP) Certification, I’m studying that planning and organizing are important when beginning a undertaking.

Then I had a thought: Why not use these undertaking administration abilities to plan a certification journey?The Mission Administration Method to Certification” positive does have a pleasant ring to it.

Getting a certification takes a whole lot of dedication, lengthy hours, sacrifice, and examine preparation! The identical is true whenever you’re managing a undertaking.  On my journey, I’ve discovered in regards to the 5 phases of undertaking administration: initiation, planning, execution, monitoring and management, and at last, closure. Making use of these ideas helps section the work, create a examine timeline, map progress, and construct confidence to fulfill objectives.

As a result of they’ve labored so effectively for me, I feel they might additionally give you the results you want. Let’s take a more in-depth have a look at the 5 steps you possibly can take to plan your Cisco certification journey like a undertaking supervisor!  

Step 1: Initiation 

Earlier than you begin your journey, it’s essential to first outline your goal; your anchor of motivation for whenever you get distracted. Lists have at all times helped me keep targeted.

Make an inventory of the explanations you wish to get licensed. I’m a visible individual, so I write them out and publish them on the wall. My causes are advancing my profession, rising my wage, and gaining credibility within the trade. I additionally created a storyline from my record.

My story went like this:  

I’ve rather a lot to supply and may in all probability do extra with my pure expertise and talent. I plan tasks all day lengthy anyway. Would certification increase my credibility? The analysis I’ve learn says hiring managers usually tend to rent and promote individuals from inside after they maintain certifications. It may imply a rise in my wage, and this degree of accreditation is a monumental achievement. 

When you want a little bit push to get began on your record, ask your self: why certify? What are you able to achieve from being licensed? Perhaps somebody impressed you and now you wish to develop into the following certification success storyAnalysis attainable job roles, contemplate the market demand and the place there may be alternative. For instance, cybersecurity is among the fastest-growing fields. If it piques your curiosity and also you wish to pursue a job in safety, reply the decision to certification. You can even discover out extra about profession paths you possibly can take, what has labored for others, and be taught extra about every Cisco certification from the Cisco Studying Community Group. 

Together with your goal outlined, you can begin planning your objectives.

Step 2: Planning 

I’d by no means begin planning a highway journey with out a map and an itinerary of important sightseeing locations. Likewise, you may make an action-item roadmap for examination subjects whenever you create your certification plan. Suppose you’re finding out for the CCNA Cisco certification: you’ll find the CCNA examination subjects on the Cisco Studying Community and obtain a examine plan worksheet.  

Tasks could be overwhelming. The Mission Administration Course of Chart* exhibits 5 phases and 49 processes to observe as you examine for the PMP. Every has its personal set of inputs, instruments, methods, and outputs (ITTOs). Sounds overwhelming, proper?  

However you possibly can break down these processes into smaller items to make them extra attainable. For instance, a Mission Administration work breakdown schedule (WBS) is a visible, hierarchical, and deliverable-oriented deconstruction of a undertaking.* A useful diagram device for undertaking managers, this step-by-step method enables you to map out one thing enormous into smaller, bite-sized duties.

The primary steps in a WBS embody defining the undertaking, setting boundaries, figuring out deliverables and crew members, and charting undertaking actions over time. To simplify, let’s take the primary CCNA examination matter and break down the primary topic class into sub-subjects based mostly on the educational map. You possibly can do that for every matter for the examination: 

Plan Your Cisco Certification Journey like a Project Manager with CCNA Exam Topics


Now take the examination subjects and do the identical factor, including an estimated timeline for every field. You realize your self higher than anybody else, and you understand which ideas will take longer to soak up. However take warning! An extended timeline isn’t at all times higher. Stretching issues out too lengthy can result in procrastination. 

💡 Tip: Save time in your CCNA certification examine plan with this CCNA Examination Subject Examine Software. (It’s free!)

Step 3: Execution 

The execution part forces you to set a deadline to finish your certification after which transfer towards milestones all through the plan. Based mostly in your timelines in your WBS, hold adjusting till you’re snug and your undertaking appears achievable. Then go forward and begin, attempting to remain as near your timeline as attainable.  

 The WBS blocks symbolize your milestones. Cross them off as you full them. Asana is a wonderful device for planning and constructing your certification technique. 

Step 4: Monitoring and Management 

This part means you possibly can alter alongside the way in which as you measure your efficiency and set targets. Ensure that to maintain your examine enjoyable and interesting by mixing up your supplies. Use assets equivalent to Cisco Press books, coaching movies, podcasts, and Prep webinars, and keep in mind to reap the benefits of your community! Ask questions from the specialists within the Cisco Studying Community Group boards. 

Step 5: Closure 

Simply whenever you thought you have been executed, you continue to must gauge your information. An examination evaluation device like Examination Overview: CCNA  is an effective way to do this. You can even hone your abilities with Cisco apply assessments, Cisco Studying Labs, and community simulation and virtualization instruments like Cisco Modeling Labs. 

Congratulations! Lastly, you possibly can end what you began and take the examination to fulfill your objective! 

Following these steps to plan your certification journey like a undertaking supervisor would possibly seem to be rather a lot to swallow. However if you happen to take small bites, plan your journey, and set up your time and assets, you’ll be amazed at how a lot you possibly can accomplish. I do know I used to be. 

Thanks for studying! I hope you discovered this weblog useful. I’d love to listen to what you concentrate on my undertaking administration method to planning a certification journey. In case you have different strategies that give you the results you want, let’s hear ’em. Share your ideas within the feedback beneath!


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Associated: Keep within the loop on each blueprint replace and revision. Learn: “Certification Roadmaps: A Holistic View to Plan Your Certification Journey.”  Learn now.



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