Effective Solutions Through Partnership

Category Archives: Corporate Training

About the KAIP Academy’s Training and Certification classes

Agile, Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO), Certified ScrumMaster (CSM), Corporate Training, Information Technology, KAIP Academy, Learning, Professional Development, Project Management, Project Management Professional (PMP), Sacramento, Scrum, Technology, Training, Workforce Development

Learn more about the KAIP Academy, northern California’s premiere training and certification resource for professionals looking to advance their career and professional opportunities!

Interested in registering for one of KAIP Academy’s upcoming courses? Start here!


Corporate Training, Infographic, Information Technology, Innovation in the Public Sector, IT Modernization, ITIL, KAIP Academy, Learning, Sacramento, Technology, Training

You know we offer ITIL exam prep courses through KAIP Academy, but if you’re on the fence about whether this class is right for you, check out this FAQ! Do you have a question we didn’t answer? Ask it in the comments or email academy@kaipartners.com! Then click here to register for a KAIP Academy course!

Introduction to Scrum from an Outsider’s Perspective

Agile, Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO), Certified ScrumMaster (CSM), Corporate Training, KAIP Academy, Learning, Project Management, Sacramento, Scrum, Training, Workforce Development

By Tim Townsend, CSM, CSPO

Creating effective teams capable of working together toward a common mission is one of the most important goals of any organization. Whether it’s software development or how to bring a new product to market, no large project can succeed without collaboration from an organization’s employees.

Knowing how important this is and making it happen are two very different things.

One of the trainings offered by the KAIP Academy teaches a framework that allows a team to put Agile product development practices into action.

“Scrum” has been around since the early 2000s and traces its origins towards looking at organizations that are able to develop products quickly and respond more deftly to change. Most importantly, it’s a framework instead of being a prescriptive process. This allows Scrum to be adapted to any organization or situation.

I completed both KAIP Academy’s Certified Scrum Master® (CSM) and Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO) classes. In the process, I learned a lot of useful strategies to maximize the effectiveness of teams in the workplace. Each class focused on the role of a particular team member in Scrum.

Through the CSM class, attendees are taught through a series of interactive exercises and lectures what Scrum is, the tools it utilizes, and the team events needed to carry it out. The role of the Scrum Master is to facilitate the use of the Scrum framework and help resolve any impediments that arise while a team is working on a project. It’s a role that requires strong soft skills and a high degree of emotional intelligence—things that cannot be learned in a two-day training program. However, taking the Scrum Master class will certainly give someone the tools to develop these skills.

One of my favorite elements of the CSM class was the freeform it took. Instead of learning a linear curriculum in a predetermined order, the class was asked to set the agenda and the order of the topics. This was true to the Scrum method where teams determine how to best accomplish their goal and how their work will be completed.

The second class I took was the Certified Scrum Product Owner® (the person in charge of delivering the highest business value from the product). Being a Product Owner is arguably the most difficult role in the Scrum framework. Unlike a traditional project manager, a Product Owner in Scrum doesn’t rely on a hierarchical authority to direct a team towards their goal. Instead it’s about collaboration and negotiation with the team while keeping an eye on the ultimate objective.

I found it particularly helpful to learn how to refine a large project into small actionable items and how this is a constantly evolving process as the project moves forward. We were even able to put these principles into practice during the training through a team exercise where we planned, built, and refined our own product (in our case, a new type of cell phone holder).

Going forward, I will be using many of the skills and strategies taught through the CSM and CSPO courses and would highly encourage others to further their professional development through these courses.

Interested in taking the CSM or CSPO course through the KAIP Academy? Click here for all our KAIP Academy course information!

About the Author: Tim Townsend is an Associate Consultant for KAI Partners and a communications specialist with on IT project developments. Prior to joining the company, he was a Chief of Staff in the California State Legislature, where he worked for eight years. He enjoys snowboarding with his wife and is a parent to two rescue dogs.

PMP® Certification Bootcamp: Here to Pump…You Up

Corporate Training, KAIP Academy, Learning, PMP Certification Bootcamp, Professional Development, Project Management, Project Management Professional (PMP), Sacramento, Training

By Nick Sherrell, MBA, CSM, PMP

With New Year’s resolutions in full swing—or for some of us (looking at myself here), still struggling to get off the ground—the word ‘bootcamp’ is a word often thrown around.

I’d like to talk about a different kind of bootcamp, the PMP® Certification Bootcamp I attended through the KAIP Academy.

The PMP® Certification Bootcamp is a 4-day course that takes you through the newly updated Project Management Book of Knowledge (PMBOK) Guide Sixth Edition to prepare you for the ultimate project management fitness test…the PMP® Exam!

With over six years of direct IT project management experience, I eventually hit a point in my career where a PMP® certification was necessary for me to reach the next level. I assumed with all my project management experience, passing an exam should be easy! I went to the PMI website to apply for the exam and stumbled upon a practice exam. I clicked on the ‘Start’ button and haughtily said, “Bring it on.”

Apparently, what I meant by ‘it’ was a heaping dose of humility.

The practice exam chewed me up and spit me out much like the first day of a fitness class after a long winter of watching movies and eating cookies.

Yes, I was DOING project management activities at work, and many of the same words were used. However, the application of these processes and the order and frequency in which to use them wasn’t exactly in alignment. I knew the exercises and a few routines, but I did not know how to arrange them into a whole-body program.

Enter the PMP® Certification Bootcamp course.

The course was led by Doug Johnson, a man with more acronyms after his name than one tweet can hold! On top of the acronyms, he has over 30 years of experience. Through the 4-day course, Doug takes you through the 10 knowledge areas and 49 processes within PMBOK, how to apply them properly, and sprinkles in real-life experiences to highlight how they work well—and sometimes how they don’t work out well and how to adapt as necessary. Another asset of Doug’s experience is his knowledge of the PMP® exam. He has great insight into what processes, terms, and knowledge areas are likely to be highlighted in the PMP® exam.

On the last day of the course, we took a few practice exams. Now humbled from practice exams, I cautiously clicked the start practice exam button, and…Success! I passed the practice exam with flying colors!

With this confidence, I completed the PMI application process and am scheduled to take the PMP® exam soon. I can now say I am appropriately confident that I am ready and able to pass this exam and move to the next chapter of my career in project management.

Now perhaps I can use some of this newfound project management knowledge to help get my New Year’s resolution beyond the Initiation Stage…

Interested in taking KAIP Academy’s PMP® Certification Bootcamp course, or want more information about the class? Click here!

About the Author: Nick Sherrell is a Project Manager with over 10 years of healthcare experience ranging from Quality, Performance Improvement, Technology Implementation, Data Analysis, and Consulting. Nick has worked with organizations ranging from the Sacramento Native American Health Center, Kaiser Permanente, Sutter Health, Blue Shield of California, and The Advisory Board Company. He currently works for KAI Partners, Inc as a Project Manager Consultant on a Public contract with the State of California. He received his MBA from UC Davis in 2015 with an emphasis in Organizational Behavior and Innovation. He became a Certified ScrumMaster in 2018 through Scrum Alliance training offered at KAIP Academy. He lives in Sacramento with his wife, two children, and Golden Retriever Emma.  Find Nick on LinkedIn here.

Is the PMP® Certification Bootcamp right for me?

Agile, Corporate Training, KAIP Academy, Learning, PMP Certification Bootcamp, Project Management, Project Management Professional (PMP), Sacramento, Training, Workforce Development

The KAIP Academy is excited to offer the PMP® Certification Bootcamp! This course is ideal for people who are getting ready to take the Project Management Professional® (PMP) exam through the Project Management Institute (PMI).

Wondering if this class right for you? Check out these FAQs to help you decide!

Still on the fence? Email any additional questions directly to academy@kaipartners.com.

Ready to register? Click here!

Course Questions

Q: What needs to be done prior to the taking the PMP® Certification Bootcamp?

A: We recommend you visit www.PMI.org and start the application process. This requires documenting your project management experience and references. If you have a bachelor’s degree or higher, you need to have 4,500 hours of project management experience. If you have a high school diploma, you need to have 7,500 hours of project management experience.

Q: Are there any prerequisites to signing up for the PMP® Certification Bootcamp?

A: Anyone can sign up for the course, however, there are prerequisites for taking the PMP® exam (see above). Some students take the PMP® Certification Bootcamp and then sit for the Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)® exam, which does not have requirements regarding experience.

Q: Is there homework during the PMP® Certification Bootcamp?

A: There is no official homework during the PMP® Certification Bootcamp, but we do ask students to review the material covered for the day in advance, so if they have any questions, we can address them first thing in the morning the following day. The course includes several “hands on” student labs throughout where students work together as a team to practice some challenging and highly tested areas of PMBOK®.

Q: I have been a project manager for many years. Why should I sign up for an exam prep course like the PMP® Bootcamp instead of just taking the test?

A: You must have 35 “contact hours” of PMP® training, which is satisfied by attending our PMP® Certification Bootcamp. Another key benefit to attending our course is the interaction between the students and the instructor. By simply reading a book, you only have one way the material is presented to you and you are not allowed to ask questions or clarification from the author. Furthermore, a good instructor should know areas that have a high likelihood of being on the test and can emphasis these areas in class and check to make sure you are grasping the concepts before moving onto the next topic. The amount of detail required to pass the exam is one of the biggest challenges for a PMP® candidate. This can often lead to being frustrated and overwhelmed and may eventually lead to giving up altogether. Our PMP® Certification Bootcamp instructor offers encouragement to assist you in the psychological journey that accompanies the PMP® exam.

Project Management Book of Knowledge (PMBOK)® Questions

Q: Does this training cover the PMBOK® Guide Sixth Edition updates?

A: Yes, this course is highly aligned with the PMBOK® Guide Sixth Edition and includes additional material that is not directly found in the PMBOK® guide.

Q: How is PMBOK® Guide Sixth Edition different from the previous versions?

A: The PMBOK® Guide Sixth Edition is a significant change from previous versions. This PMBOK® Guide Sixth Edition is more aligned with relevant “real world” project management best practices and has a greater emphasis on agile practices.

Q: Do I need to read the PMBOK® Guide Sixth Edition before attending the PMP® Certification Bootcamp?

A: No, although it would be a good idea to do a high-level overview of how the material is organized. The PMP® Certification Bootcamp goes through the PMBOK® in detail.

Q: How do I obtain a copy of the PMBOK® Guide Sixth Edition?

A: You get a free copy of the guide when you join PMI. We recommend you join PMI before you schedule your exam—one of the benefits of joining PMI is the significant reduction in exam fees.

Course Cost Questions

Q: What is included in the price of the PMP® Certification Bootcamp?

A:  A training manual, a PMBOK® study tool, and lunch and refreshments each day.

Q: Is the cost of the PMP® exam included in the price?

A: The cost of the exam is separate. If you have a PMI membership, the cost of the exam is $405. If you do not have a PMI membership, the cost of the exam is $555.

“But I’m not a Project Manager” Questions

Q: I have never held a job with the title “Project Manager”—is the PMP® Certification Bootcamp right for me?

A: Yes, the content learned in the PMP® Certification Bootcamp can be applied to many areas of work. If you work on teams and need to accomplish a certain objective within a specific time frame, you are essentially doing project management. Many people do “informal project management” without even realizing they are doing project management work.

Q: I don’t have a lot of project management background—am I going to be overwhelmed by the content?

A: Yes, you may be. However, our instructor works to provide customized support and guidance to each student to help manage overwhelm.

PMP® Exam Questions

Q: Will the PMP® Certification Bootcamp teach me everything I need to know to pass the exam and receive my PMP® certification?

A: Yes, the course covers everything you need to pass the Sixth Edition (current) of the PMP® exam. We strongly encourage students to purchase the practice exam questions to continue reviewing and to receive feedback on your level of readiness for the exam. The questions are available at PMTraining.com for $68 for 90 days of access, which should be an adequate amount of time to study.

Q: How long should I study and prepare for the PMP® exam after I take the PMP® Certification Bootcamp?

A: Between 3 – 6 weeks depending on how well you do on the practice exams.

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