Post-PMP® Syndrome (noun) – A group of symptoms commonly found after project managers tirelessly prepare to pass the PMP exam pass it and bring home the gold, and then find themselves asking: What’s next?
Does this sound familiar to you? If so, you or someone you know may be suffering from Post-PMP Syndrome. Here are a few tips to make sure you get the most out of your PMP.
1. Don’t Keep It A Secret. Send an e-mail out to team members and managers letting them know about your achievement. Talk to your manager about how you might be able to use your PMP immediately to help the organization. Volunteer to do a “lunch and learn” to help others in your organization learn more about the PMP and prepare for the exam.
Update your resume and any online profiles where you professionally network. Put your PR hat on and get the word out.
2. Walk The Walk. The best way to strut your PMP is to show results. Project Management is the art and science of getting things done, and now you can embody that with every project. In our careers, we are often as good as our last hit. You don’t have to be a one-hit wonder. Now, you have the knowledge to keep charting, year after year, with success after success.
3. Become A Student Of History. Abe Lincoln has nothing on you. With your freshly-minted PMP credentials, you can show ‘em how it’s done. At the end of every project, capture best practices and lessons learned, creating an invaluable documentation of hits and misses. You’ll quickly become the “go-to” person who is always in the know.
4. Measure Your Successes. If you can show your value by measuring your successes, it’s much easier to negotiate your next raise, promotion, transfer to another location or a virtual working agreement.
5. Network With Other PMPs. Join a local Project Management Institute chapter and network with other PMPs. Know what is happening in other industries and how the PMP is being valued monetarily. If you’re in an industry that doesn’t value the PMP, maybe it’s time to explore opportunities in industries that do.
6. Volunteer At A Non-profit. Is there a cause that is close to your heart? Use your PMP and your skills to help a local non-profit manage an important initiative. Not only will you be doing good for others, you’ll be networking, meeting people outside your industry and stretching outside your comfort zone.
7. Check The Job Boards. Regularly check job boards so you can see what kinds of companies and industries are looking for PMPs and what the salary ranges are. This will give you a head start if you want to reposition yourself for a new opportunity.
8. Project Confidence. Let your PMP shine through. Approach projects with a renewed sense of confidence. You’ll inspire those around you with what you’ve learned and encourage others to improve their skills through your actions.
9. Keep It Fresh With PDU Courses. Successful people never stop learning, and part of keeping your PMP current is taking PDU courses. Maybe you’ve thought of having your own consulting practice; you can take a course on Building Your Consulting Practice and earn 50 PDUs. Whatever your interest is, explore PDU classes that keep your skills fresh and your PMP up to date.
10. Be A Change Agent. Use your PMP to be the fuel behind any goal you want to achieve. Whether it is personal or professional, treat your dream as a project, and use the skills of a PMP to get you there. You can be the change you wish to see.
So, say goodbye to the Post-PMP Syndrome and hello to the future you want to lead. Those three letters are more than a professional credential. They are personal power boosters. Get ready to take off!
About the Know How Network and Cheetah Learning
The Know How Network is a monthly column written by Michelle LaBrosse, the founder and Chief Cheetah of Cheetah Learning. Distributed to hundreds of newsletters and media outlets around the world, the Know How Network brings the promise, purpose and passion of Project Management to people everywhere. Visit www.cheetahlearning.com to learn more about Cheetah PM, the fastest way to learn about Project Management and get your PMP. You can also get your career in gear with CheetahWare, free Project Management tools from Cheetah Learning.
About the Author
Michelle LaBrosse is the founder and Chief Cheetah of Cheetah Learning. An international expert on accelerated learning and Project Management, she has grown Cheetah Learning into the market leader for Project Management training and professional development. In 2006, The Project Management Institute, www.pmi.org, selected Michelle as one of the 25 Most Influential Women in Project Management in the World, and only one of two women selected from the training and education industry. Michelle is a graduate of the Harvard Business School’s Owner & President Management program for entrepreneurs, and is the author of Cheetah Project Management and Cheetah Negotiations. Cheetah Learning is a virtual company and has 100 employees, contractors, and licensees worldwide.