The Top 5 Certification mistakes

NetworkingStudentNetworkingStudent Member Posts: 1,407 ■■■■■■■■□□
The Top 5 Certification Mistakes To Avoid

I like this article..

What number do you think is most often misunderstood? I want to say number 5, but I could be wrong.

How to avoid the top 5
certification mistakes
Jide Awe, writer, speaker and founder of IT career portal jidaw.com, submitted a great essay on the subject. Good advice for first-time candidates, take heed and avoid these common traps.

1. Choosing a certification because it is hot.
The worst thing you can do is to choose a certification without thinking about your long-term career path, and where specific certification fits in the plan. Just because it's hot doesn't mean it's for you.

2. Underestimating the real cost of certification.
When it comes down to the crunch, can you make the effort? Candidates who are successful in certification ALL possess the drive and motivation to succeed and advance their careers.

3. Going to sleep after getting certified.
Certification is not an end in itself. It is a career development driver and no wonder that re-certification requirements are becoming more common. Going to sleep after getting certified means you wasted your time and money. Don't become a dinosaur.

4. Failing to prepare equals preparing to fail.
Common failures include choosing the wrong training solution or materials, trouble marrying the training with actual exams, and personal organization and time management. Cramming? You fool no one but yourself. And you have to be truthful to yourself; do you have the work experience needed for that certification?

5. Having unrealistic expectations.
Certification is no guarantee of career success; it takes real working experience, dedication and a lot of effort. Employers aren't just paying for a piece of paper--they want job effectiveness. It's not certification, but job effectiveness and planning that count most.

Mistakes are not the end of the world, so learn from them. The success of your certification choices depends on a sensible combination of career focus, planning, resourcefulness and hard work. Avoiding certification mistakes is about being wise in your decision-making. You need more sense than skills to create your amazing future.
When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened."

--Alexander Graham Bell,
American inventor

Comments

  • alan2308alan2308 CISSP, MCSA 2008, MCSA 2012, CCNA R&S, CCNA Security Ann Arbor, MIMember Posts: 1,854 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Nothing to say about this article, but the site loses a ton of credibility with the article singing the praises of The University of Phoenix. icon_rolleyes.gif
  • MrRyteMrRyte Member Posts: 347 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I also agree on #5 being the biggest mistake.

    And If you were to google IT salaries, you'd find that a lot of the charts and graphs are misleading. I've seen some graphs/charts that claim that a CCENT will make up to $60K+/year and a CCNA will make $85K+/yr. icon_surprised.gif
    NEXT UP: CompTIA Security+ :study:

    Life is a matter of choice not chance. The path to your destiny will be paved by the decisions that you make every day.
  • tbgree00tbgree00 Member Posts: 553 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I think 3 is a big mistake. You get the cert then "Sleep" and it devalues your work and the cert itself. I've been called out over not remembering how to configure RRAS in 2008 R2 when we needed to emergancy build a Radius server. My MCSE is in 2003. They were joking but still, if you have the letters you should expect to be asked anything that is related to that topic, even if it's not on your version or not covered.

    Always be learning!
    I finally started that blog - www.thomgreene.com
  • NightShade03NightShade03 Member Posts: 1,383 ■■■■■■■□□□
    MrRyte wrote: »
    I've seen some graphs/charts that claim that a CCENT will make up to $60K+/year and a CCNA will make $85K+/yr. icon_surprised.gif

    You mean this isn't true?! icon_wink.gif
  • QHaloQHalo Member Posts: 1,488
    You mean this isn't true?! icon_wink.gif

    Actually it was for me, but I wasn't really using it :p

    I got my CCNA because one of our network guys said they were going to hire another person on their team but that they wouldn't look at anyone less than CCNA, then that never happened. I plan on using those skills for another career path so all is not lost.
  • alan2308alan2308 CISSP, MCSA 2008, MCSA 2012, CCNA R&S, CCNA Security Ann Arbor, MIMember Posts: 1,854 ■■■■■■■■□□
    MrRyte wrote: »
    I've seen some graphs/charts that claim that a CCENT will make up to $60K+/year and a CCNA will make $85K+/yr. icon_surprised.gif

    So you mean those commercials I hear on the radio every morning about how I can take their overpriced classes, get Microsoft certified (and yes, this is as specific as they get), and immediately start making $80,000 to $100,000 a year are wrong? icon_mrgreen.gif

    The best part is the "entrance exam" on their website with questions that are so simple my wife got 100% on it.
  • N2ITN2IT Inactive Imported Users Posts: 7,483 ■■■■■■■■■■
    Number 3 is broken a lot. I've always felt convicted of this yet I am as guilty as the next. I have made it a conscience effort to only study finance and ITIL. I have "narrowed" my scope down too those two. However I may allow that to bleed over into other service frameworks. But for now I am pulling the reigns back and sticking with those two.

    That is not to say I don't read up on technology, I do everyday.
  • mikedisd2mikedisd2 Member Posts: 1,096 ■■■■■□□□□□
    tbgree00 wrote: »
    I think 3 is a big mistake. You get the cert then "Sleep" and it devalues your work and the cert itself. I've been called out over not remembering how to configure RRAS in 2008 R2 when we needed to emergancy build a Radius server. My MCSE is in 2003. They were joking but still, if you have the letters you should expect to be asked anything that is related to that topic, even if it's not on your version or not covered.

    I don't mind being asked of things that I'm certified in but I'm not going to tolerate the expectation that I will have instant recall of any topic.

    I currently have a task to sort out a dodgy certificate server config, except I haven't touched one in years. Yes, I know how to find information on what needs to be done, but I've covered alot of ground since learning this along time ago.
  • 2E1512E151 Member Posts: 81 ■■□□□□□□□□
    mikedisd2 wrote: »
    I don't mind being asked of things that I'm certified in but I'm not going to tolerate the expectation that I will have instant recall of any topic.

    I agree
  • KasorKasor Member Posts: 929 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Life is full wiht suprise and unexpectation..., so just have to deal with it. ...

    Remember, it is your career and either you gain or loss.
    Kill All Suffer T "o" ReBorn
  • WebmasterWebmaster Admin Posts: 10,292 Admin
    I disagree with the first item being "the worst thing you can do". Surely you should think about your career path and the value of a cert on the long run, but that goes for any cert exam, not just the hot ones. Unless of course the certification requires a huge time and money investment, but there are worse things you can do than having a hot yet not-so-relevant cert on the long run - obviously going for an unknown/irrelevant cert without thinking about the future would be one of them but imo so are items 2-5. Going for a "hot cert" (the value of that term depends a lot on who says it's a hot cert...), even it's not entirely your thing, can make all the difference on the short and long run in a competitive market where the first battle is won if you get past HR.
  • RobinwoodRobinwood Member Posts: 10 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Are they really true ? icon_rolleyes.gif
  • MrRyteMrRyte Member Posts: 347 ■■■■□□□□□□
    alan2308 wrote: »
    So you mean those commercials I hear on the radio every morning about how I can take their overpriced classes, get Microsoft certified (and yes, this is as specific as they get), and immediately start making $80,000 to $100,000 a year are wrong? icon_mrgreen.gif
    icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gif
    Well; that's why I thought it deserved special mention since it's so misleading. That crap will lead an unsuspecting noob to believe that once they finish that $5k one-week IT-cert boot camp that they'll be livin' large in no time.icon_confused.gif
    NEXT UP: CompTIA Security+ :study:

    Life is a matter of choice not chance. The path to your destiny will be paved by the decisions that you make every day.
  • pzeropzero Member Posts: 192
    We had ads similar to that here in Aus. "You could be making the average IT wage of $83K a year in just 4 months....." or something like that.

    Problem is tho that average also takes into account all the senior level and specialist jobs your at least 10-15 years away from.

    In reality its, do our 4 month cramming course and ill call you on the helpdesk. Oh and enjoy that 35K-40K salary.
  • JDMurrayJDMurray MSIT InfoSec CISSP SSCP GSOM GSEC EnCE C|EH Cloud+ CySA+ CASP+ PenTest+ Security+ Surf City, USAAdmin Posts: 12,675 Admin
    #1 "certification should not be seen just as a meal ticket. It should be part of an individual's career development strategy." Isn't your career also your "meal ticket?" Mine certainly is. And you can go for a cert because you find the subject interesting, not because it has anything to do with your career goals. And then there's that Pokecert, "I gotta collect 'em all," mentality. icon_rolleyes.gif

    #4 is people who take boot camps without realizing what they are and what they are for. Same could be said for a lot of people after taking their first SANS class.

    #5 is what I see a lot. Where do people get the bizarre idea that having the "XYZ certification" = $100,000+ job? I don't see any cert vendors or training providers guaranteeing that. It must be those CertMag salary surveys. icon_lol.gif
  • darkladdiedarkladdie Member Posts: 25 ■□□□□□□□□□
    JDMurray wrote: »

    #5 is what I see a lot. Where do people get the bizarre idea that having the "XYZ certification" = $100,000+ job? I don't see any cert vendors or training providers guaranteeing that. It must be those CertMag salary surveys. icon_lol.gif


    I see a lot about #5 also. The problem is not the cert vendor but those for-profit colleges or educational institutions that just want people to take their overpriced training and load up on those loans to take their classes.
    I remember one of these places got my cousin to take the plunge for CompTia A+ training and promised him a job paying at least 60K+ (NYC salaries). The class cost him 10K and they did find him a internship that led him to a job that paid 40K. The job has nothing to do with his training but at least it got him in the door. Unfortunately my cousin got into this before talking to me. I would of told him that there are a lot of Community Colleges that offer the same training for about 10%-25% of that cost.

    Just thought I would share this personal story for people looking to jump in to IT. There are a lot low cost training opportunities out there if you take the time to search.

    I hope this helps.
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