6 Best Resources for Project Managers: Level Up Your Skills

In my quest for financial independence, I’ve been working on obtaining the CAPM (Certified Associate in Project Management) from the Project Management Institute (PMI).

I signed up for an online course through Austin Peay University that included a course and certification for Organizational and Behavioral Leadership

The course I purchased ended up just being a guided walkthrough of an exam prep book and the PMBOK (Project Management Body of Knowledge), so it wasn’t really all that helpful in actually teaching me anything.

Because of that, I scoured the web and my local library for additional resources to help me prepare for the CAPM certification exam. It costs $300 to take it, meaning I don’t want to fail it and then have to shell out that much again to retake it.

If you’re looking to get the CAPM certification yourself, here are the supplemental resources I’m using to prepare for the exam that I’ve found to be the most helpful…

#1: Google’s Project Management Course

I’ve gotten into the beginning of this one and made it far enough to know that it’s worth the time and money investment, but I’ve not completed it yet. I’m still working on completing the course I purchased from APSU, but this one will be next.

The biggest pros of this course vs. others is that it counts towards your educational requirements the PMI (Project Management Institute) makes you have to qualify to take the CAPM, and it’s built to accommodate every learning style.

You get video and written instructions with quizzes. Not only that, but it guides you through making a portfolio you can use when job hunting—how cool is that?!

They offer other courses for marketing, ecommerce, and IT included in the price, which is $50 a month. The faster you get through the material the less you pay.  

To find out more about the Google Project Management course and the others courses they offer, click here.

#2: Atlassian Learning Center

This was a blog I stumbled across when I was working as a Content Manager for my older sister’s company we co-founded together (Content Ninjas). 

I wanted to learn project management and I was a pretty avid blog reader at the time because I was writing and editing 4-6 blog articles a day for clients, so that’s where I started on my search for knowledge.

Their blog is really thorough and includes all the information you need for the most popular project management methodologies. 

Check out their learning center for yourself by clicking here.

#3: Harvard Business Review Project Management Handbook by Antonio Nieto-Rodriquez

As I mentioned at the beginning of this article, I hit up my local library for some books to help supplement my education on project management. 

So far, this has been my favorite for explaining the foundational terms and information in a simple, easy-to-understand way—hands down.

Check out the deets on the Amazon product page by clicking here.

#4: Project Leadership by James P. Lewis

This is my second favorite project management book I’ve read. This one gives you a more in-depth understanding of foundational leadership concepts, how they apply to project management, and the basics of the MBTI to help you work better with people who are different personality types than yourself.

As far as a simple description of the MBTI goes for determining your type, this book is IT. I’ve not seen another explanation that was any better on any of the sources I’ve scoured online or in books.

Read my full review of the book by clicking here.

Snag your own copy of the book or audiobook from Amazon by clicking here.

#5: Project Management for the Unofficial Project Manager: A FranklinCovey Title

This was the first book I bought and read on project management. They explain some of the foundational terms PMI uses, but they talk about how they did things in their own way to suit their own needs.

It’s a great explanation of how to tailor the concepts and processes you learn for the CAPM and PMP to meet the specific needs of your projects.

Click here to find out more about it on the Amazon product page.

#6: The PMP Exam: How to Pass on Your First Try (Test Prep series) by Andy Crowe

I bought this one at the same time I bought “Project Management for the Unofficial Project Manager.” 

This was before I really knew anything about the PMP and that the CAPM even existed.

The APSU course I bought uses a different exam prep book, but I honestly prefer this one better. It comes with videos for each chapter where he reiterates the information in video format. I like his writing style much better too. This one is a more enjoyable read.

Click here to find out more about it on the Amazon Product Page.

Bonus Resource: Surrounded By Psychopaths: How to Protect Yourself from Being Manipulated and Exploited in Business (and in Life) by Thomas Erikson

This book right here guys—whew—this is THE book that you have to read no matter what profession or stage of life you are in. This one knocked out one of my top 3 books (The Hidden Psychology Behind Social Networks) from my list and become my #1 favorite.

It uses the DISC model for personality types and explains what a psychopath of each type would look like and how to spot their patterns of behavior. it’s ssssssoooooooooo good!!!!!!!!

I’m telling you, for serious, if you read nothing else your entire life, PLEASE READ THIS BOOK. You can check out my full review on it by clicking here.

Click here to purchase the book or audiobook from Amazon now.

Bonus Resource: The Wisdom of the Enneagram

Full disclaimer: I’ve only skimmed this one, I’ve not read it yet, but it’s in my TBR pile. The top 3 personality assessments based on science (not birth and star alignment like astrology—*rolls eyes*) are:

  1. Myers-Briggs (MBTI)
  2. DISC
  3. Enneagram

If you noticed on the resource list, I’ve included a book that gives you the lowdown on the MBTI, DISC, and now enneagram. If you want to work with people and be a more efficient and compassionate leader, YOU NEED TO KNOW THESE.

I watched the course in Business Made Simple University and listened to Donald Miller’s podcasts on the enneagram, but this is the first book I’ve purchased. It looks like a fantastic read, but we will see. 

Click here to check it out for yourself.

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Danielle Phipps

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