Hello people, let’s talk about my certification journey.
I know that writing exams can be a bit difficult or challenging for a few people, and I am one of those people who went through the same ordeal. I’ve always been doing my development, software engineering and even when I came into enterprise development with Microsoft technologies, SAP and AWS, for me it’s all about just building and developing solutions. Then I had to write a few exams, from my SAP days where I had to write SAP SuccessFactors exam, SAP S4Hana exam and other form of exam, same with writing my Microsoft Power Platform, Dynamics and Azure exams, the funny thing is I failed a lot of my initial attempt, as I saw no reason for those exams really.
So then it was more like reading, you know, following industry patterns and then writing certifications, and then you fail or you pass depending on how you’re able to master what you’ve read, right? And those days were hell for me, you know, trying to read to pass and all of that, but as I grew, I understood that my career validations and progress are hinged on these certifications to validate the practical skills I know.
Then I found a way to address failing, I discovered it should be more easier for me considering I had hands on experience which is majorly what most exams consist of, so what I did was, whenever I was on a project, I schedule exams that relates to that project and read alongside, so it makes reading more easy and my mind easily recollect what I engage with on a daily, that made my exams easy and, I aced most of the exams I wrote from then on, and this helped in over 30 SAP exams I took then which I passed over 90 percent of those exams and earned those certifications.
In my career with Microsoft technologies, I used the same approach, project handled became the mock I need for my exams, sometimes I also give myself test and dummy projects just to engage in the solutions and definitely, you know that projects comes with their own challenges, so those challenges and those late nights of solving them aid my assimilation of the technology and I always make sure my exams, are scheduled within those periods.
Notice that, my approach is a practical hands-on approach, get my hands on the technology first, run some project no matter how small they are, and then push to be certified in the field, the issue is most career driven folks try to get certifications with no skills, no experience, no real life scenarios and then they fail exam over and over, and when you get on real-life project, a lot of people think themselves less to deliver based on their examination experience.
That is why I always encourage colleagues that it is better to fail on projects, and solve those failure, tackle those challenges, have sleepless night, research and be sweaty, then when exam time comes, it becomes easier and even if you fail any exam, your hands-on is not wasted and it becomes an encouragement to go again.
The trick is this, if you have not encountered them before in deployment or during projects, when you see them in the exam, then it becomes difficult to really understand them. In this case. So that’s why it is much easier to make sure that practical hands-on forms the background to what we call writing certifications. So for whichever technology, platform, skills, career path you might be pursuing, make sure that you don’t just approach them by reading and writing, approach them from the practical side. Then after, you could go out to read, take mock exams and then write the actual certification exams.
Those are very important things I like to do. To also add to your practical journey would be to have physical views of things. So most times, I go through videos of people who have probably practically built things around that particular certification I’m trying to acquire. So when I go through videos of what they have done, I am able to also have a physical view of how they solve challenges, and issues they faced. So all of those put together then forms a very central knowledge right into your writing certification. And that’s how it has been for me.
Lastly, I space my certifications also, initially I like to write them together. I like to just write a lot and I discover that those who were not helping. So now what I do is I space my certifications. So I might have vouchers ready for about five exams. I can space them about three weeks in an interval. So I have enough time to practically try things out, read, and then write.
Those are very important things to do. I hope this has been helpful for you, the reader. Please, have a wonderful time and I wish you all the best as you give effort to growing yourself.