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Is Your Business Background Up to Par? Compete with the Pros and get Certified!

Submitted by kaitlynnakagoshi on Tue, 2011-11-22 02:50

The University of San Francisco, in partnership with University Alliance, has provided this article. The University of San Francisco offers higher education opportunities through a variety of online master certificates, including business process management. To see additional information please visit
Is Your Business Background Up To Par? Compete With The Pros and Get Certified!
Too often, career professionals: analysts, business process managers, and executives alike, believe that once they have reached a certain level in their organization, have acquired advanced degrees or have taken a few in-house courses, that they have all of the tools to advance to a higher level or maintain their current status. That’s really not the case.
Have you truly evaluated your business background lately to gauge where you stand with your peers?  What have you done to solidify your competitive edge? Are you up to date with current business strategies? These are the questions you need to ask yourself – and you must be honest with the answers. If you aren’t 100% satisfied with the results, you may want to consider a professional certification program as your “stepping stone” to optimize your career success.
Think of it this way – PGA Tour players can’t even think about winning an infamous green jacket until they qualify for The Masters. Even the pros regularly adjust and improve their swing, and that includes short game as well. Continuous training “on the green” has many benefits, but the same goes for “off the green” real world business scenarios. Some of the competitive advantages include:

  • Narrowed down field of expertise (more concise than a business degree)
  • Resume recognition (avoid getting pushed aside or worse, thrown out!)
  • Shows commitment to career and company (even if tuition assistance is available, bettering one’s self is always an admirable trait)
  • Can be just as valuable as a degree, but takes considerably less time and money
  • Ultimately leads to higher salary and promotions

Lifelong learning is no longer an option, but a necessity for the career professional to gain a competitive advantage. Professional certification that is above and beyond a college degree is quickly becoming the tool to effectively compete with peers, and is highly valued by the corporate world. It can be an important factor in the advancement of a current employee’s career or the deciding factor in the hiring decision of a prospective employee. 
Whether you have an associate’s degree, bachelor’s degree or a master’s degree, employers are looking for additional education that is current and relevant. When choosing a program, beware of the flash and the hype. It is essential to enroll in a professional certification programwith several courses that specialize in the same discipline to establish credibility, rather than taking random, unrelated courses. Just as the top tour players gain the most sponsor recognition, the highly-certified professionals get their resume bumped to the top of the pile.
BPM certification demonstrates a multitude of admirable traits. Organizations often use continuous improvement in performance evaluations, which can be a major component in merit increases and promotions. Professional certificate graduates have stated that they have achieved greater success professionally and on a personal level. Being able to apply the skills and knowledge obtained from certificates and professional training is what really makes someone an all around “pro” – leadership, negotiation, workflow assessment, process optimization, and project management.

Kaitlyn Nakagoshi
Born and raised in sunny Florida, I graduated from the University of South Florida with a B.S. in Political Science and a B.A. in Management. I work for the University of San Francisco's and the University of Notre Dame's online certificate programs, in partnership with University Alliance. I enjoy online shopping, golf, cooking, and eating tart frozen yogurt.
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