Project Management Professional
Becoming a Project Management Professional and PMP Certification
According to the Project Management Insitute (www.pmi.org), there are more than one million certified Project Management Professionals (PMPs) worldwide. Their most current salary survey has revealed that the median salary for PMP certificate holders is 25% higher than for project managers without certification. This fact alone should be enough to motivate most people to become certified PMP. However, there are also other great advantages to becoming a PMP, such as:
- Membership into a professional community that provides support for one another: You can, for example, join a local PMI chapter.
- Recognition from employers and supervisors that you have the on-hand experience, training, and knowledge to be an effective project manager
- Speak the right language worldwide that enables you to successfully run projects worldwide since the processes, terminology, and guidelines from PMI are globally recognized and widely used.
I took the exam in 2010, and I realized the benefits almost immediately. Having those three letters, “PMP,” after my name set me apart from my peers and colleagues. Also, my LinkedIn profile received more attention, which led to headhunters reaching out to various organizations and me requesting I work for them as a consultant, speaker, and/or trainer. Mind you, I do believe I had a lot of good luck here, but I also know through the first-hand experience that many of my colleagues and students have realized similar benefits once they become certified. In addition, the PMP elevates your status with respect to confidence from peers, superiors, and clients. And for those of us who have started our own consulting businesses, having the PMP is crucial.
Project Management Professional and PMP Exam Prep Certification
Certification in the business world helps you sharpen the skills you require to run your business and provides you with more opportunities for networking and marketing. Additionally, as a consultant, especially when starting, you need access to all kinds of resources, which, in the beginning, you may be trying to create from scratch. These resources are much easier to obtain through certification and inclusion into the PMP community. For example, whenever I have needed a specific template, procedure, or even a subject matter expert (SME), I always contact fellow PMPs to see what they already have. Most times, I find that these peers are willing to share their knowledge or, if I need more extensive support, I may hire them since I feel that fellow certified professionals will be more credible.
The other major benefit to being a PMP is that it enhances your other professional work. For example, the PMP is not only considered the gold standard of project management certifications, but it is often a prerequisite to getting work and/or a promotion, such as in the IT industry. Also, if you work in the architecture-engineering-construction (AEC) industry or in sustainability or biotechnology, to name a few, the PMP will demonstrate to current and prospective employers, as well as clients, that your career capabilities are backed by solid managerial skills, including the soft skills needed to lead teams, work with all kinds of stakeholders, facilitate and negotiate conflict resolution, and manage successful projects from beginning to end.