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Upcoming Events

 

It's Coming!
Mayday Madness

 

Wouldn't it be nice to celebrate an event like Cyber Monday more than once a year? We think so too, so here comes
Mayday Madness.
  
On May 1. we'll be offering a special 21% discount on ALL of our Professional Development Courses and Exam Preparation Products. Why 21%? It's to celebrate our 21st Anniversary, that's why?
   
Watch for more details on our Mayday Madness one day event, coming to an email box near you soon!

      

Upcoming Courses

  

Agile Fundamentals

 

BA Fundamentals

  

Business Process Improvement

 
 
Business Process Modeling

 

CBAP Certification Prep 

 

 CCBA Certification Prep

 

Consulting Skills to Solve Business Problems

 

Data Modeling

  

 Facilitation Skills Workshop

 

Getting Started in Business Process Management

 

Influencing Without Authority

 

Planning and Managing Requirements

  

 Industry Events

IIBA MSP Professional Development Day

April 15, 2013

7:30 am - 4:30 pm (CT)

The Audacity of Quality Requirements 

Presentation by

Bob Prentiss, CBAP  

 

Agile Adoption: Barriers, Paths, & Cultures - Oh My!

Presentation by

Mike Stuedemann

 

IIBA Los Angeles April Chapter Meeting Virtual Webinar Event

April 16, 2013

6:30 pm - 8:30 pm (PT)

Creating Bulletproof Business Cases

Presentation by

Richard Larson, PMP, CBAP

 

Southwest Ohio Business Analysis Regional Conference

April 19, 2013

8:00 am - 5:00 pm (ET)

Seven Ways to Build Trust for Successful Requirements Elicitation 

Presentation by

Elizabeth Larson, PMP, CBAP, CSM

 

Fantastic Voyage or the Impossible Dream? The BA as Management Consultant

Presentation by

Richard Larson, PMP, CBAP

 

Watermark Learning

Webinar Event

April 26, 2013

11:00 am - 12:00 pm (CT)

BA Toolkit: Essential Tools for an Agile Project (or any other for that matter)

Presentation by

Richard Larson, PMP, CBAP

 

WIBADD 2013

April 30, 2013

8:00 am - 5:00 pm (CT)

Foolproof Plan for Passing the CBAP or CCBA Exam

and

Bulletproof Business Cases for Rock Solid Projects

Presentations by

Richard Larson, PMP, CBAP

  

The Courage to Scribe: 3 Tips for Influential Scribing

Presentation by

Elizabeth Larson, PMP, CBAP, CSM

  

Next IIBA Certification Chat

May 3, 2013

Free session to ask anything related to CBAP/CCBA certification - from the application to exam prep to test-taking tips, even re-certification.

 

To Register 

 

CBAP/CCBA News 

New Anytime Learning Course for CBAP/CCBA Exam! 

 
 
Watermark Learning is excited to announce our new CBAP/CCBA Anytime Learning option to help you prepare for certification!

Anytime Learning offers students the same study materials as our classroom and virtual classes with the advantage of taking the class on your own time-any time! Progress at your own speed with a video version of the class.

In addition to the study materials (which includes 90- day free access to our CBAP/CCBA Online Study Exam), you can also ask questions of one of our CBAP-certified instructors during your study time. For more information on CBAP/CCBA Anytime Learning, contact Roberta Hoffman, at 952-921-0900, ext 208.

   

April 2013 - In This Issue
The Courage to Scribe, Part 2
Virtual Meeting Challenges, Part 2
Product News
Requirements Writer's Block
Industry News
Upcoming Webinars
Feature Article
  

The Courage to Scribe, Part 2

  

By Elizabeth Larson, PMP, CBAP, CSM,

Co-Principal, Watermark Learning, Inc.

 

 Elizabeth Larson Sm Photo  
           

In Part 1 I discussed the role of the scribe, how the scribe and facilitator work together, and some of the critical skills that effective scribes need to turn the chaos of random discussions into the structure needed to develop the solution. In Part 2 I will explore why organizations need courageous scribes.

  

Courage to push back on the pushback. It takes courage to scribe well. In many organizations we encounter pushback related to scribing. We hear lots of reasons why not to scribe. Remarks like those below can discourage us unless we have the courage to educate project and resource managers on why scribes are needed and influence them to assign this important role. 

 

Read more

Virtual Meeting Challenges: Stop Fighting the Multitaskers, Part 2

By Andrea Brockmeier, PMP 

 

The frustration of multitaskers was the topic of my last blog, in which I reminded readers of two things most of us already know: 1) Our brains really don't allow us to mentally think about two things at once, and 2) Most of us are not able to sustain our attention on something for more than about 40 minutes.
 

What can a virtual team facilitator do given these real, valid constraints of attendees? Below are five virtual meeting strategies that may mitigate the tempo-busting frequent request to "repeat that, please." These aren't things that will work for every meeting, so you need to be strategic about when you try to utilize these approaches. When you really need everyone mentally present, see how these work for you.

 

Read on

Product News
 
 
New Courses: Critical Thinking Skills for Today's Problem Solvers
 
Here is more detail on yet another new course joining the Watermark Learning family this Spring.

 

To foster decision making, creativity, and innovation, it is essential to be a critical thinker. Critical thinkers are clear as to the purpose at hand and the questions at issue. They question information, conclusions, and points of view. They strive to be clear, precise, and relevant. They seek to think beneath the surface, to be logical and fair. This course provides a practical framework for understanding critical thinking and provides strategies for developing critical thinking in all business and technical arenas.

 

This course is designed to present a practical guide for developing solid critical thinking skills. Participants will learn to describe the purpose and benefits of Critical Thinking. Course objectives include gaining an understanding of the problem of egocentric (irrational) thinking, and learning to describe the components of intellectual standards for evaluating reasoning.
 
For more information on this and four other new courses now being added to our schedule, click here. Check our online Public Class Schedule for course availability, or contact a Watermark Learning training consultant.
Requirements Writer's Block
Bob Prentiss Sm Photo

By Bob Prentiss, CBAP

 

Requirements writer's block - it happens to all of us at some point. Writer's block is a condition where an author loses the ability to produce new work. Requirements writer's block may happen for several reasons including: a lack of concentration, a feeling that our work is inferior, general feelings of anxiety, lack of inspiration, or perhaps we are struggling, simply because the project we are working on was ill conceived. RWB (because I had to give it an abbreviation, right?) is both common and frustrating. We have deadlines looming, stakeholders wondering whether we have captured the requirements correctly, the developers anxious to start the design phase and we come down with a case of RWB. I want you to know that you are not alone! Here are some tips to get you past the difficult moments.

 

Read more

Industry News
  

Bob Prentiss Presentation

Breaks Attendance Records

For Central Iowa IIBA Meeting

 

A presentation by Bob Prentiss, Watermark Learning's Director of Client Solutions - Business Analysis, recently broke all attendance records for the Central Iowa Chapter of the IIBA. The meeting, held March 28 at John Deere Financial in suburban Des Moines, drew over 150 registrants, beating out previous meeting registrations by 20%!

 

Bob's presentation, "Requirements Held Hostage - Elicitation in Crisis" presented the parallels between hostage negotiations and requirements elicitation in the life of a typical BA. "Bob absolutely crushed this presentation," said Andrew Walling, the Chapter's Director of Programs. "The facility where the meeting was held is somewhat remote, and the record attendance demonstrates the drawing power of Bob's topic," he added.

 

 

Make Sure Your Study Materials Match The Exam You Plan to Take

 

Even though historically PMI has minimized the implications of an update to the PMBOK Guide for the PMP exam, the addition of a 10th Knowledge Area, five processes, and other changes are significant enough that you should make certain your study materials are consistent with the version of the exam you are planning to take.


If you do plan to take the current version, don't delay scheduling a seat at Prometric. It hasn't always been the case, but sometimes there is a rush for seats near the cutover date of an exam update and it becomes difficult to find a time slot at your Prometric location of choice. If you plan to take the current version, Watermark Learning recommends scheduling it sooner rather than later so you aren't faced with not being able to get the exam scheduled before the cutover. Be aware of the $70 fee for rescheduling your exam within 30 days of your scheduled date. 

  

 Learn more  

 Upcoming Webinars 
 
Our March webinar, "I Don't Have Time to Manage Requirements: My Project is Late Already" presented by Elizabeth Larson, PMP, CBAP, CSM, was attended by more than 400 participants from the BA and PM communities. Don't worry If you were unable to attend, as we also provide recordings of all webinars for our members' use. Here are the next  webinars in our 2013 lineup:
  • April 26: BA Toolkit: Essential Tools for an Agile Project presented by Richard Larson, PMP, CBAP
  • May 17: The Art and Science of Conflict Management presented by Susan Heidorn, EdD, PMP, CBAP
"Whenever possible, I make time for any of Watermark's webinars. I always come away with a new perspective and information -- whatever the topic."

Participant in Elizabeth Larson's March 15, 2013 webinar, "I Don't Have Time to Manage Requirements, My Project is Late Already"

 

 For a complete list and to register, please visit our Events page.

 

      Clients Header      
               

CBAP/CCBA Virtual Exam Preparation Course 

 

"This class was great. I thoroughly enjoyed it.  It seemed to affirm that I had a good knowledge of (the) BABOK.

 

"I really cannot think of anything you could do to improve the virtual experience. It was great. I'm scheduled for another class and would definitely recommend Watermark to others.  By far the best online BA training I've received to date."

 

  

Anne Minnax, Business Analyst - Recent Course Participant

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