Wednesday, November 30, 2011

A Recap - #PWWCBA - Congrats You're Certified - Now What!

Chuck Millhollan, Director of Program Management for Churchill Downs, home of the Kentucky Derby, known worldwide as the "Greatest Two Minutes in Sports"(!!!) and a self-professed PM Geek started the morning off - It was good to start the day with Chuck - not only because his energy was contagious - but, his message reminded us why it is so important to continue our journey of professional development. Bottom line, having a PMP or CBAP designation is now a baseline - not a differentiator. There are a whole host of skills and competencies leaders seek - when asked "I just wish my PM/ BA could __________", the fill in the blank is never completed with "get their PM/ CBAP" certification.

Chuck offered the "Chuck's PM/BA Taxonomy" - a focused offshoot of Bloom's Taxonomy. At Level 1, the foundation, is Knowledge and Comprehension. Can you list and explain? Level 2 is Application - Can you Apply and Act? Moving to Level 3 - Arrange & Prioritize and finally at Level 4 - Synthesis and Evaluation - to adapt and defend. Certification is used as a filtering process; the value to organizations is one's proficiency.

The PMP/CBAP exams fit into Level 1. At Level 4 are skills and competencies like Critical Thinking, ones that take more time to acquire and integrate into how you carry out your day to day work. His challenge to us as PM's and BA's is to develop a tailored professional growth plan based on our current knowledge, skills and behaviors. Certification validates our foundation knowledge; it is not the end but the beginning of our journey to develop into experts in our fields. My question to you - what are you doing to move through Levels 2 - 4 (I, for one, am attending PWWCBA to further develop my professional abilities)?

As a Project Management Consultant, I always get asked "Do you have a template for that?" When Chuck remarked that the real question is "How did that template help? What challenges did you face in implementing this?", I realized that getting the template is only Level 1 - the real result, using it effectively to move the project forward successfully, requires focusing that template for use (Levels 2 and 3) and then applying Level 4 to actually make it stick. Key point!

Highlights? Sitting with a like-minded group of folks, engaged in a discussion about how we best continue our professional journey. What is really expected of us. How we become most proficient in our professional journey. Chuck said it best - let me close with 2 quotes:

"The measure of professionalism is that you do the things you don't like to do with the same level of passion of things you like to do."

"Knowledge is only potential. Proficiency is power!"

Connie Emerson
Principal, ProjectMAPS

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