“Does earning a certification make me an expert in my field?”
“I don’t need a piece of paper to tell me that I have the skills I need to be successful.”
The truth is that there are a variety of misconceptions and misunderstandings about professional credentials and certifications. You should be asking these questions, because if the organization that you are working with cannot answer them, it is unlikely that you will see a return on your investment. In order to understand how a certification can provide you or your company with enough value to show ROI, we must first understand what it is.
“Certification” according to the NCCA, the nation’s leading accreditation body for certifying organizations, is defined as, “Measuring, in a standardized and unbiased manner, the ability of the candidate to apply the knowledge and skills in the professional role. Passing a certification establishes that the individual is minimally competent to work unsupervised in a given field or profession, but does not mean that an individual knows everything required to be considered an expert in a given field.”
Put more simply, a certification is a verification of a specific set of skills. This means that before deciding whether or not to obtain a certification, you must decide if the skill-set being examined is something that you see as a value for furthering you career. If that is not the case, a certification may not be a good fit for you.
However, often employers or customers will ask during the sales process or in an interview for example, “Are you Certified?” It is a valid question. Many industries have certification programs, and although social media certification is just beginning to emerge in the social media industry, people still want to have that level of comfort with your skill-set before deciding whether you are the right fit for their business.
So to answer the question of “what value you will get by earning a social media certification?” – It will have as much or as little of value as you decide it does. Put it to use, and it may help you in ways that you might have never known.
What other value do you think a social media certification could provide?