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Black Belt training series

  • 1.  Black Belt training series

    Posted Feb 27, 2018 12:49 PM
    I keep hearing about these black belt sessions. What is the advantage to paying for these as opposed to just attending the free webinars offered here?

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    Lynn Brookdale

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    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


  • 2.  RE: Black Belt training series

    TOP CONTRIBUTOR
    Posted Feb 28, 2018 08:06 AM
    For me, it was the opportunity to put all that knowledge in order and to give me a perspective of the entire system. The progression of the series led me through the most basic of impacts on the end user experience to the advanced expectations of an administrator responsible for analyzing a business problem and offering an elegant solution to it. I also enjoyed working through the labs for that hands-on training that helps me hard wire the concepts in my memory.

    For my employer, it was evidence of training in and mastery of the system for which I'm specifically responsible.

    For others who may be reading this post, I've pasted below an overview of the program.

    Black Belt Training Series
    #Admin #Technical​​

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    Patrick Wright
    Central Virginia CRMUG Chapter Leader
    www.crmug.com/richmond

    Marketing Technology Lead
    Cherry Bekaert LLP
    Richmond VA
    pwright@cbh.com
    ------------------------------

    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


  • 3.  RE: Black Belt training series

    TOP CONTRIBUTOR
    Posted Feb 28, 2018 11:07 AM
    @Malcolm McAuley and I will be taking them together, so that we can get educated in order to do our jobs better, speak more intelligently with Partners and vendors, but most importantly to prepare for the Dynamics Certification tests.

    This is of utmost importance to me, because if I get a higher mark, he buys the beer. ​​This is serious business, folks.

    The webinars to date have not promised me beer. :(

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    Peter Gulka
    National Manager, Systems Enhancement and Training
    Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada
    Calgary, AB, Canada
    ------------------------------

    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


  • 4.  RE: Black Belt training series

    D365UG/CRMUG ALL STAR
    Posted Feb 28, 2018 05:25 PM
    I also did the Black Belt courses. I found them very beneficial because it was more hands on than some of the certification prep. It also focuses a lot on best practices and how to be a good manager of the system. So not just what to do but how to ensure the changes you make are valuable for the organization.

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    Kylie Kiser
    Supervisor, CRM System
    Fairfax VA

    crmug.com/washington
    ------------------------------

    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


  • 5.  RE: Black Belt training series

    Posted Mar 01, 2018 09:29 AM
    How long does each course take, on average? I'm would expect somewhere around a day (8 hours)?

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    Jesse Ruppell
    BI Development Process Manager
    Microsemi Corporation
    Ottawa, ON, Canada

    Dynamics 365 CRM 2.1 On-Premises
    ------------------------------

    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


  • 6.  RE: Black Belt training series

    Posted Mar 02, 2018 12:14 AM
    The full series include Blue through Black, correct?

    Thank you,

    Cassandra

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    Cassandra Perkins
    Director of Administration
    America's Physician Groups
    Los Angeles CA
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    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


  • 7.  RE: Black Belt training series

    TOP CONTRIBUTOR
    Posted Mar 02, 2018 05:48 AM
    Is the series only covering Dynamics 2015 - or is just that the description that hasn't been updated?



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    Niels Lønberg
    Sales Support and Business Development
    Semco Maritime
    Esbjerg
    ------------------------------

    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


  • 8.  RE: Black Belt training series

    TOP CONTRIBUTOR
    Posted Mar 07, 2018 01:37 PM
    ​Niels, did you get any update/answer on this?  I am interested in taking the courses, but not until I'm sure they cover Dynamics 365 (at least v8, and v9 would be ideal).

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    Ben Edgren
    CRM Applications Specialist
    Hufcor, Inc
    Janesville WI
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    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


  • 9.  RE: Black Belt training series

    GOLD CONTRIBUTOR
    Posted Mar 07, 2018 04:02 PM
    Yes, the belt course content is still based on Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2015.

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    Jenny Cox
    Director of Software Solutions
    All Medical Personnel
    Irving TX
    ------------------------------

    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


  • 10.  RE: Black Belt training series

    Posted Mar 02, 2018 10:22 AM
    I am curious about this too. I know people will take different amounts of time to do the course but is there an average time folks take?

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    Benny Kounlavouth
    D.R. Horton
    Arlington TX
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    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


  • 11.  RE: Black Belt training series

    TOP CONTRIBUTOR
    Posted Mar 07, 2018 02:19 PM
    ​I believe there are four, three hour courses per belt.  So I would estimated 12-15 hours per belt earned.

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    Ben Edgren
    CRM Applications Specialist
    Hufcor, Inc
    Janesville WI
    ------------------------------

    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


  • 12.  RE: Black Belt training series

    Posted Mar 07, 2018 03:09 PM

    Hi guys,

    I'll add some insights as the program creator to hopefully help answer some questions.

    A few years ago I was training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Getting my Blue Belt took me about a year, and I knew I had plenty of time before getting my Purple Belt...so I started thinking "What if we had a program to train CRM Admins that followed the same principle of BJJ Belts. This is why there are 4 belts in the program as opposed to the gazillion color combinations you have in Karate. :D

    Initially, the program was only based on Live deliveries, they were virtual, but live...and I delivered all the training. You could ask questions, get more examples, etc.

    The main issue with this approach was timing, two issues with timing actually: 1. I didn't want anyone to take all 4 levels back to back, I wanted the system to be like BJJ where you have to learn skills, practice them many many times, and once you are proficient at those skills then you get your next belt and move on to learning new things. So I came up with a system where Blue belt sessions were delivered weekly on Thursdays, Purple belt sessions were delivered on the first Wednesday of every month, Brown belt sessions were delivered on the first Tuesday of every quarter, and Black belt was delivered on the first Monday of every six-months. So technically, if you timed it right, going through all the belts would still take you several months. For most people it took about a year to become a Black Belt Admin. And not everyone that completed training became a Black Belt, there was a test at the end of the program where you had an assignment and you had to "defend" that assignment and the decisions you made on a 1-on-1 interview with me. Intimidating for some people, but I think they would agree it was a lot of fun and a great challenge.

    The second issue with timing was that it all depended on me delivering the courses virtually (the Black Belt level was the only one we allowed people to take it in person if they wanted), so when I left the program to start my own company in 2014 the team that inherited "Black Belt" decided it made more sense to convert the program to be On-Demand, which allows people to take the training at their own pace. You could take them all in one day or follow the "old school" way and take more time to really become proficient at what you learned on a level before moving forward to the next level. So, I think it was a great move, and the results are evident every time I go to CRMUG Summit and see so many amazing people with their Black Belt ribbon. :)

    So, to answer the timing question, each level should be around 3 hours long, and you can complete them all in one day if you want to just get through with them, or you can take your time to really consume and digest all of the great content the Black Belt training team has put in place. If your job is to be a CRM Administrator for your organization, I recommend you don't rush through it, take your time, do your labs, ask questions, be curious, and compliment that knowledge with the rest of the great webinars CRMUG has to offer.

    To wrap up, I will say that if you do some research regarding BJJ belts, you will learn that Black Belt is not the highest level you can achieve...that level is actually Red Belt.

    Have I had a plan to create a "Red Belt" course, available only in "Real Time" (perhaps only In Person), where only certified Black Belts (who have been Black Belt for a few months/a year) are allowed to attend, and where I teach you what's really possible once you leverage all the technologies your organizations has access to (I.E. Power BI, Flow, PowerApps, etc.) all along? Possibly. ;)

    Should this "Ultimate/'Tip of the Spear' CRM Admin Course" be made available to Black Belts out there?

    Maybe we should let those Black Belts decide... :)



    ------------------------------
    Gus Gonzalez
    Microsoft MVP and CEO
    Elev8 Solutions
    Atlanta GA
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    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


  • 13.  RE: Black Belt training series

    TOP CONTRIBUTOR
    Posted Mar 12, 2018 10:01 AM
    Thanks Gus!

    Are there plans to update the content for v9 of D365? @Malcolm McAuley and I are about to start the course, but I would hope that given the cost involved the content will be relevant for us. ​​

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    Peter Gulka
    National Manager, Systems Enhancement and Training
    Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada
    Calgary, AB, Canada
    ------------------------------

    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


  • 14.  RE: Black Belt training series

    Posted Mar 13, 2018 08:19 AM
    Hi Peter,

    I haven't been in charge of the program since late 2014 so I can't answer the question regarding how up to date the content is. Based on posts on this thread it appears as if the content has not been updated since 2015.

    I will say though that most (if not all) of the CRM Admin techniques you would learn in 2015 will work in v9.

    So I wouldn't be discouraged from attending this training.

    Let me me know if you have any other questions.

    Thank you.

    ------------------------------
    Gus Gonzalez
    Microsoft MVP and CEO
    Elev8 Solutions
    Atlanta GA
    ------------------------------

    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


  • 15.  RE: Black Belt training series

    Posted Mar 12, 2018 02:54 PM
    ​What are the Certifications everyone is mentioning? I thought Microsoft had retired the CRM certifications. If they have not, that's excellent!

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    Nicole Steck
    System Administrator & Software Developer
    WPS Wisconsin Health Insurance
    Monona WI
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    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


  • 16.  RE: Black Belt training series

    D365UG/CRMUG ALL STAR
    Posted Mar 12, 2018 04:20 PM
    @Nicole Steck The old CRM Certifications were retired but they have been replaced with some new ones. The first certification path is the MCSA which is two exams - deployment then customization and configuration. Then there is the MCSE where you can choose exams based on your focus area (example sales).

    You do not need to take all of the exams or even both for the MCSA if you don't want to. The one I find more applicable for administrators is the​ MB2-716 Customization and Configuration.

    I recently took the MCSA exams if you want to check out my blog on how I studied.

    Good luck!

    ------------------------------
    Kylie Kiser
    Supervisor, CRM System
    Fairfax VA

    crmug.com/washington
    ------------------------------

    The first step toward cloud success. - Migrate from CRM to D365 with expert guidance from Microsoft. I'm Ready


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