The CrankyPM is asking for your input on the value of being certified as a Product Manager by any of the various orgs that give these tests. Click here to jump to her post and fill out the survey she has set up.
Not to skew the results any, but here’s the comment I left on her blog.
Certifications are important in a few situations:
1. There is critical knowledge that is needed to perform a task, and not having that knowledge can lead to dangerous or catastrophic results.
2. A certain minimum (hard — i.e. clearly measurable) skill set is needed to competently perform a task or job, and there is wide market agreement that the skill set is best attained via training or education.
WRT to Product Management, there is not even a simple and clear standard definition of the role, so how can there be certification? What is being certified.
I’d also point the finger a bit at the groups that deliver certification tests. They’ve not gained the credibility of the market so that there is value placed on their certifications. Their objective should not be simply to certify people. Instead, it should be to create the market demand for certified professionals thus driving the certification process.
Given the domain is Product Management or Product Marketing, I’d classify this as an epic fail on those promoting certification. They, of all people, should understand market forces and how to drive market demand for their product.
One question you might have asked would be to those hiring managers, and whether they require, prefer or seek out certified candidates.
I’d like to hear your comments on this topic as well. Do you agree/disagree or have another perspective?