November 12, 2007

PMP - Does It Matter Anymore?

Exclusivity is the name of the game. Exclusive implies limited to only a select few - the finest - the best - the pedigree. What applies to the social context regarding exclusivity also applies to the discipline of project management. And PMP was supposed to confer an exclusive stamp on the select few - the experienced, educated, knowledgeable and competent project managers.

Exclusive brands lose their aura once the brand becomes commercialized for monetary gain or mass apeal. I feel the PMP certification has suffered a similar fate.

What was supposedly an affirmation of high caliber management expertise gained over many years of rigorous in-the-trenches experience augmented by education and mentoring is today being peddled as a cheap three letter acronym. Available to anyone with a week's worth of time and about $1000 to spare.

So what is the credibility of a PMP today? It has become the industry de rigueur certificate to get considered for a PM position. Basically a required but not sufficient trait. If you are an aspiring PM - get a PMP if you want your resume to cross the first rejection point but look beyond the PMP to gain applicable management skills. If you are hiring manager - a PMP is not a guarantee of exceptional skills and thereby the credential needs to be given only so much emphasis.

Unfortunately, when everyone wears the proud badge of being an exceptional manager - it makes you wonder how to tell apart the truly exceptional. Instead of being a differentiator of talent and skill - the PMP certificate has succeeded in providing an easy rubber stamp to flood the market with PM professionals.



Kishore said...

Well said. PMP is a bogus certificate. Everyone I know is a PMP and many of them don't know basic project management.

Anonymous said...

Kishore - ever heard of causation vs. correlation? Just because there are a lot of bogus PM's out there that have the PMP certificate doesn't mean the actual certification is bogus. You're a douche bag...