How I prepared for the Professional Agile Leadership - Evidence Based Management Certification Exam

Last post 07:12 pm May 2, 2021
by Scott Anthony Keatinge
7 replies
09:02 pm December 9, 2020

Hi everyone,
I recently look the PAL-EBM exam and wanted to share what I did to prepare for the exam. First and foremost, I've read and referenced the EBM guide probably hundreds of times in the last 3-4 years. I used the guide as helping two organizations implement EBM. You can learn more about both EBM and my journey at one organization in the webcast titled - How Net Health uses Evidence-Based Management (EBM) to Guide their Agile Transformation. I also watched the following webcasts several times as I seem to pick up something different from the conversation each time.

  • Introduction to Evidence-Based Management - How do you measure and improve your ability to deliver value?
  • Lessons Learned from Implementing Evidence-Based Management

The following blog posts were a huge help:

  • Investing for Business Agility
  • Extending Impact Mapping to Gain Better Product Insights

I am familiar with hypothesis driven development, and have dug into the Lean UX, Lean Enterprise books. This thinking helped inform me. For the exam, I leaned heavily on the open assessment as they are always your friend. All in all I'd recommend reviewing the suggested study resources and put as soon as you can your learning into practice - or dare I say an experiment. The exam was no walk in the park and I'm so happy that I was able to validate all of my learning and experience.


I hope this helps!

06:11 pm December 10, 2020

Nice! Will take a look at these in my personal preparation towards this certificate!

I’ve only learned today that there’s an EBM PAL variant (only knew about the PAL-I version, so how long have I been living under a rock? :D ). What is really the difference between those? I read that the PAL-I talks about having ‘fundamental level of understanding..’ while the EBM version talks about ‘advanced level of understanding..’.. but if I read it like this it looks that the EBM version is really based on that guide while the PAL-I is more general ‘what if..’ understanding..

04:08 pm December 12, 2020

PAL I is about understanding how agility adds value to an organisation and what leaders can do to support agile teams. 
EBM-PAL focuses more on how empiricism (hypothesis and experiments) helps teams and organisations to learn, make better decisions and improve outcomes.

09:19 pm December 15, 2020

Hello everyone. 

As part of the preparation for the PAL-EBM exam, I produced a series of flashcards to solidify my understanding of the material. 


I hope that assists with your continued learning. 


04:48 pm December 19, 2020

Sorry for the stupid question, but just to confirm, the EvBM is required to read when you are preparing for PSPO or PAL? 

01:09 pm December 21, 2020

@nicholas, thank you for your overview. Als thanks to @nick for the flashcards.

10:21 am May 1, 2021

@Alfredo, yes, study the EBM guide as well as other related articles mentioned in both learning paths in regards to PAL I & PSPO. 

@Nick, unfortunately Kaspersky does not like your flashcard link so I cannot access them.  Do you have the original link instead of the shortened one? 

07:12 pm May 2, 2021

Hello all, I have just passed the PAL-EBM.  Overall, I thought it was a very enjoyable exam which I thought I had done far better in than I actually did. 

If you have already taken the PAL I exam, you will remember some of the questions you are given in this exam.  As usual, some questions from the open assessment also occur in the exam giving you some easy freebies. 

I took this exam five days after passing the PAL I, as I wanted to keep that experience as fresh in my mind as possible. 


My preparation for this exam consisted of the following materials, which builds upon the knowledge I have gained from studying from all of my other previous exams: 

  • 01_Measuring value to enable improvement and agility.docx
  • 02_EBM Guide 2020_1_SMLP.txt
  • 03_Investing for Business Agility Apr2020.pdf
  • 04_Agile is constant change_SMLP.txt
  • 05_Scrum and Hypothesis Driven Development_POLP.txt
  • 06_Measuring Agility .docx
  • 07_It's time to learn the missing metric_PALLP.txt
  • 08_When are SMART goals not-so-smart .docx
  • 09_Extending Impact Mapping to Gain Better Product Insights_SPS.txt
  • 10_Scrum+Pulse_EBM+in+the+Field_June2020.pdf
  • 11_EBM+Webinar+v3_6.2019.pdf
  • Agile+Transformation+Kata+1.4+(EN).pdf
  • Are you aiming for more Business Agility .docx
  • ATK+Readiness+Check.pdf
  • Becoming Agile Evidence Based Management .docx
  • Deciphering Goals.docx
  • Do You have Evidence of Your Agile Transformation .docx
  • EBM Metrics.docx
  • EBM Report Dashboard.xlsx
  • Embrace ENVIRONMENT and human SOCIETY by extending Current Value (CV) in EBM (Proposal).docx
  • For EBM to be successfully applied.docx
  • How to Measure Success Is it Even Possible.docx
  • How to start with Evidence-Based Management .docx
  • Hypothesis.pdf
  • LAP_EBM_Webinar_05Nov2020.pdf
  • Measure Business Opportunities with Unrealized Value.docx
  • OKRs The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly.docx
  • Practice Your Agile Transformation with a Kata (Whitepaper) .docx
  • Product_Strategy_Canvas.pdf
  • Scrum is for Teams. Kata for Organizations..docx
  • Scrum Values meet Agile Principles .docx
  • ValuePlanning.pdf
  • What is organizational agility really What should it be.docx

Items 01-11 are the exams suggested reading.  The remaining material I found by searching this sites blogs, forum posts and webinar videos (the videos should not be missed). 

The txt items relate to material that is already covered from other certification tracks that this site offers.