Unlearning things is difficult too…!

From today I am undergoing hectic 5-day training sessions for PMP certification. This is the second Project Management certification training for me in less than 6 months!

The first was PRINCE2 (Projets In Controlled Environment), which is a PMP equivalent certification instituted by UK Govt. and is more prevalent in the UK and parts of Europe.

In the very first session, when I told the instructor that I have done PRINCE2 certification, she said, “That’s good! Then why do you want to do PMP certification? The basic concepts are just the same – just terminology is different…so you may skip this…” and she waited for me to say, “OK…” and walk out and give place to someone else – if there is anybody on waiting list.

But she did not know my adamant nature 🙂 I simply turned a deaf ear to what she was saying…as if it was not meant for me (I am very good at such things!) …she understood and conmpleted her sentence, “…so you may skip this…OR if you still want to undergo this training and certification for personal benefit (READ: To increase job prospects and swicth job!) you may do so”

Needless to say I again ignored it, and remained in the training room 🙂


OK, so now training has begun – and first thing I notice is: I have learned all the concepts, there is nothing new which I can expect in the next 5 full days of labourous and yawn-inducing training. The bad part is: though concepts are all the same, the terminology is different. A Project Initiation Document is now called (in PMP jargon) a Project Charter etc.

This means I have to ‘unlearn’ the jargon, the terminology used by PRINCE2 without forgetting the basic concepts! Quite a tough task.

Let me put it in simple and lucid language. Imagine this: You have undergone a training on driving – you know function of signal and what each colour stands for.

Now you undergo another training for driving – and guess what, it has a signal too! The only difference is – the colour code here is not the same…in fact, it’s completely goofed up.

So in the new system, you would STOP on a BLUE light and START on a RED light, you would slow down on a PINK instead of a YELLOW…you will turn RIGHT when the arrow indicates LEFT and vice-versa!!!

The basic concept and functionality of the signal still remains the same – but the mapping of signs and color code is different.

So you MUST first unlearn the earlier mapping of a RED and STOP or a GREEN and START – without forgetting what signal is meant for. Then you MUST map new color – BLUE to STOP and RED to START.

Sounds easy? Then imagine this for 30 or 60 colors instead of 3…yep, there are more than 50 processes, sub-processes, knowledge areas and controls involved here…

So today I had to try hard to ‘unlearn’ the jargon/ terminology I had learned just 6 months back…

I am still struggling to com
to terms with this mapping/ unmapping game – even when the training moves ahead at frantoc pace…Let’s see how I cope up with this new challenge!

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