Most of us are pretty comfortable in our jobs. We are respected by others and follow predictable routines. Yet, the world is rapidly evolving and perhaps the only way to stay ahead of the competition is be smarter than the competition.
There are several aspects to being “smarter than the competition.” First, there is pure knowledge which enhances the form, quality, and frequency of valuable information flows. Next, “smarter” means translating knowledge into action. Engineering, project, and product managers must make effective and timely decisions to stay ahead in today’s fast-paced businesses. Finally, being “smarter” recognizes what you don’t know, or self-awareness.
Gaining educational knowledge is the classic approach to improving growth opportunities versus the competition. Today’s leaders require a variety of technical degrees and professional certifications can establish skills, capabilities, and competencies. Certifications are perhaps the quickest and easiest way to demonstrate specific educational and professional experiences with industry-wide credentials. For example, New Product Development Professional (NPDP) certification demonstrates knowledge, experience, and educational requirements within the field of innovation. Project Management Professionals (PMP®) show training and professional experience in effectively managing scope, schedule, cost, and communications to meet project deliverables. Engineering Managers demonstrate skills in eleven domains ranging from effective leadership models to systems engineering and quality management.
Employers select certified individuals for jobs since the credential validates knowledge within a professional field. Professional certification demonstrates transferrable skills among industries, companies, and organizations. The value of a professional certification is maintained by requirements for continuing education with a certain number of professional development hours (PDH). (See “How Learning is Different Today” for specific PDH requirements for NPDP, PMP, and PEM certifications.)
Being smarter than the competition also requires transforming knowledge into action. Simply hiring an NPDP to run your innovation program won’t make it effective or productive, just as hiring a PMP won’t guarantee 100% on-time projects. Instead, organizations needs to be open to translating the skills of their PEMs into actions.
One purpose of professional credentials is to learn industry best practices. NPDPs, PMPs, and PEMs have gained specific skills and experience that can improve the effectiveness of an organization’s business processes. It is important for certified individuals and teams to continue to learn emerging best practices in their fields so that continuous growth and productivity result. This is how a firm stays ahead of the competition.
Most credentials required earning 15 to 20 PDHs per year to demonstrate commitment to and translation of best practices into industry standards. Companies, too, benefit from continuous education by implementing leading theories to improve efficiency.
Finally, true learning occurs only when we recognize what we don’t know. Self-awareness is the first step in growth – as an individual, team, or larger organization. Continuous learning requires a degree of humility for people to admit we are not experts in all topics. Even with professional certifications, many of us are weak in areas where we have little practice.
For instance, the term “disruptive” is used to describe businesses, business models, technology, innovation, and crowds. Recognizing that “disruptive innovation” is specific to a set of business conditions and company actions, allows product, project, and engineering managers to engage in true learning for their organization’s health and growth potential. (Learn more in our recently launched Disruptive Innovation course.)
The world is changing too rapidly to accept the status quo. Project, product, and engineering managers must earn and maintain professional certifications to stay ahead of the competition. Learning involves knowledge, action, and self-awareness. Without recognizing the benefits of continuous learning, NPDPs, PMPs, and PEMs will not be effective in mastering emerging best practices in their fields. Continuous education requirements for certifications bridge the gap between initial experience and currently evolving and emerging practices.
NPDPs and PMPs requires 60 PDHs every three (3) years, and PEMs require 45 PDHs every three (3) years. Online training is a quick, easy, and affordable way to gain practical knowledge to translate emerging practices into actionable results. Use code SPE2016 before 31 May 2016 to save 50% on Disruptive Innovation training and earn 1 PDH toward you NPDP, PMP, or PEM renewal.
Study. Earn. Learn. Simple. New courses are being added for PEM, PMP, and NPDP professional development every month, so check back often! If you have questions about existing or upcoming PDH courses, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 281-280-8717.
Study. Learn. Earn. Simple.
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