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Frequently Asked Questions

General FAQs:

  1. What workshops do you offer?
  2. What is the schedule and locations of your future workshops?
  3. Can I take a workshop as an individual?
  4. What benefits will a simulation-based workshop add?
  5. Our people are too busy to be away for two or three days of class; can you cover the material in less time?
  6. Will your workshops improve my chances of being certified by PMI or IIBA?
  7. Will the Fissure workshops be in conflict with our existing methodology and tools?
  8. Our company is unique; can Fissure customize a simulation workshop for us?
  9. What do your workshops cost?
  10. How can I try before I buy?
  11. How will Fissure provide support before and after the actual on-site workshop?
  12. Is the simulator mine to keep?
  13. Can I use the simulator to do "what ifs"?
  14. Can you really help a software organization learn how to estimate, plan, track, and manage software projects better?
  15. We have a software development methodology in place. Will the Fissure workshops be in conflict with our methodology?

Company FAQs:

  1. Is my (our) satisfaction guaranteed?
  2. What do your customers say about your services?
  3. How do I find out more about Fissure?
  4. Where did the company name "Fissure" come from?

 

General:

  1. What workshops do you offer?

Fissure offers workshops covering the topic areas of Business Analysis, Project Management, Leadership, and Change Management. Fissure offers blended learning workshops that fully involve students through the use of computer simulation. We also offer workshops that are delivered in a traditional instructor led environment. Workshop durations range from a 1/2 day to 3 days depending upon the workshop.

  1. What is the schedule and locations of your future workshops?

The schedule for our public workshops can be found in the left panel of this web page. You can see our public workshop schedule by following the link below.

Public training class schedule

  1. Can I take a workshop as an individual?

All of our public workshops are geared towards enrollment by individuals. We recommend enrollment with your work team for an added teambuilding experience. Please check our schedule for the next public workshops available:

Public training class schedule

  1. What benefits will a simulation-based workshop add?

Most lecture-based training only makes us aware of skills we do not have. Rarely do we leave feeling good about using new skills; we must be allowed to practice these new skills in a risk free environment (with constructive feedback) many times over to achieve competence. This is where the computer simulations add value. The simulations allow students to run a 24 (virtual) week project during the course of the workshop, allowing them to apply their new skills.

The airlines have known about the value of computer simulations for years. They have successfully integrated simulation-based training in the certification of their pilots before they ever leave the ground. Once certified, they continue to use simulation-based training to maintain certification and continually enhance pilot skills.

  1. Our people are too busy to be away for two or three days of class; can you cover the material in less time?

Repetition is the key to building competency. We have found that two or three days of introducing tools, techniques and concepts, integrated with focused and intense practice (simulation training) are required to make permanent changes in a participant's workplace performance. That's a remarkably short time to initiate real change.

  1. Will your workshops improve my chances of being certified by PMI or IIBA?

Our workshops are designed to provide participants with hands on experience so that they actually learn how to perform effectively and not just know about a subject. Taken together our simulation workshops cover all the crucial knowledge and tools required for PMI PMP certification or IIBA CBAP certification.  Participants actually develop their skills and knowledge in an integrated experience that helps them pass the certification tests.  Our follow on PMP Exam Preparation and CBAP Exam Preparation workshops give participants the information they need to both apply for and prepare for the exam.  Fissure identifies what you need to know to pass the exam the first time. 

  1. Will the Fissure workshops be in conflict with our existing methodology and tools?
Our workshops are methodology and tool independent. They will not conflict with any client's methodology or tools.  In addition, our  workshops are compliant with the Project Management Institute's Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) and the International Instutite of Business Analysis's, Business Analysis Body of Knowledge. 

 

  1. Our company is unique; can Fissure customize a simulation workshop for us?
We design all of our courseware to be customizable to fit your exact needs. Give us a call with your ideas and requirements and we will design a course or simulation specifically for your company's processes, culture and nomenclature.
  1. What do your workshops cost?

Our prices vary, depending on the length and type of the workshop, and the number of students that attend. The typical price per student is from $250 to $450 per day. Volume discounts are available.

  1. How can I try before I buy?

We suggest booking a pilot session for your company, and inviting 12-24 of your best judges -- the people who are involved in managing projects. Or attend one of our public enrollment workshops:

Public training class schedule

  1. How will Fissure provide support before and after the actual onsite workshop?

It is our goal to make sure you fully satisfied with our services. We accomplish this by identifying and understanding your expectations and desired outcomes up-front.  We will then work with you to present a solution that will address your needs.

In the workshops we gather and set expectations with students and we review results during and after the classes to make sure we have met desired outcomes.

Fissure also offers after workshop support through our "Lunch n' Learn" follow-up sessions. These meetings are typically held several months after the workshop with the participants to evaluate not only what the students have been able to learn and apply, but also what could be improved to help them learn and apply more of the skills, tools, and techniques covered in the workshop. The feedback can be used by the students and organization to improve the project management culture.

Our after workshop support also includes responding to email and telephone questions the students may have after returning to their workplace and specific projects. This after workshop support can also be more formalized. We offer, as an option, informal and formal mentoring services and will help the organization to design, develop and implement a mentoring program. We have found that some type of mentoring program greatly increases the learning transfer. A mentoring relationship helps challenge the partisapants to use the skills, tools and techniques they learned in training and provides valuable feedback on their progress as a an individual.

  1. Is the simulator mine to keep?

Fissure is currently working on a version that students can take back to their workplace to reinforce classroom learning through another challenging simulation. This simualtion will have an ability for the student to try new project management challenges as their skill level advances.

  1. Can I use the simulator to do “what ifs”?

Using the simulator to perform "what ifs" is a popular request and will be seriously considered in future versions of the simulation tool. However, it is extremely important to point out that our simulation tool is primarily designed to be used as a learning tool to reinforce the learning of a skill set through the process of  "cause and effect" relationship feedback in a risk free environment.

  1. Can you help a software organization learn how to estimate, plan, track, and manage software projects better?

Yes, we really can. We have helped other software companies attain ISO 9000 status and improve their position within the SEI Capability Maturity Model, and we can help your company. Utilizing state of the art technology in software data management and tracking tools, we can teach you to estimate, plan, track and manage your software projects better. 

  1. We have a software development or new product development methodology in place. Will the Fissure workshops be in conflict with our methodology?

Many of our clients have put in place specific methodologies from such companies as Ernst & Young, Arthur Anderson, Perot Systems, etc. Our workshops are designed to complement these methodologies. They do not conflict with the organization's software development methodology. Fissure workshops follow the basic processes that are found in all of the various methodologies and in addition include the basic people management aspects which often are not fully addressed in these methodologies. In some cases customers have asked us to tailor parts of our workshops to ensure common definitions of terms between their specific methodologies and those used in the workshop.

Company:

  1. Is my (our) satisfaction guaranteed?

With all of our products and services, including workshops, your total satisfaction is completely guaranteed. If for any reason you do not feel you received full value for the products, services or training you received, we simply ask that you submit payment for the amount of value you felt you gained.

  1. What do your customers say about your services?

Many of our clients are surprised by the difference our training has made in their work life. You can see samples of what students say in the left panel of this page.

  1. How do I find out more about Fissure?

Give us a call or email us with your questions or comments.

Contact us

  1. Where did the company name "Fissure" come from?

In thinking about a name, the founders (Ed Tilford Sr., Ed Tilford Jr., and Barbara Tilford) liked the concept of "breakthrough".  The name was chosen as a fissure represents a “breakthrough”; a break in the rock, or a break in the ground.  Fissure facilitates breakthrough learning and growth through computer simulation and blended learning.

Ed Tilford Sr., Ed Tilford Jr., and Barbara Tilford chose the company name to also reflect our mission: to guide our customers in finding a path to their own solutions and discovering their own answers.

The name "Fissure" and our mission was again reinforced to us when Ed Tilford Jr. came across the following quote which says that good luck is a result of a good plan and a good guide, while bad luck (a mistake) should be looked upon as an opportunity to learn and improve.

"They returned to their work day after day, and, in short time, found a fissure in the rock, which enabled them to pass far with very little obstruction. This Rasselas considered as a good omen. 'Do not disturb your mind,' said Imlac, 'with other hopes or fears than reason may suggest: if you are pleased with prognostics of good, you will be terrified likewise with omens of evil, and your whole life will be prey to superstition. Whatever facilitates our work is more than an omen, it is a cause of success. This is one of those pleasing surprises which often happen to active resolution. Many things difficult to design prove easy to performance.' "

Samuel Johnson, “The History of Rasselas”, Prince of Abyssinia (1759)