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Innovation Certification - Now is the Time

Innovation Certification - Now is the Time
By Chad McAllister, Ph.D., NPDP, PMP

Finally, a resolution that will really make a difference to your career. Learn the knowledge used by successful innovators and new product development professionals. Regardless of your title, if you are involved in any way with product development, you need to understand innovation practices.

I thought as a term, we might see "innovation" decrease in usage. The opposite has occurred with many organizations recognizing that innovation is key to their success. The economic recession of the last few years caused many organizations to squeeze even harder, getting as much juice as possible out of their resources and systems. The name of the game was cost cutting. Now, organization strategies are widely embracing innovation - creating products and services that are valued by customers so much they sing its praises.

The catch is how to bring about an innovation revolution - how can an organization create an innovation foundation, infuse the culture, and get everyone moving the same direction?

The answer is found within the organization's leaders who can drive the company forward by removing barriers and blinders to increase agility inside the organization and propel better products outside in the marketplace. An innovation leader, by definition, is a person responsible for or involved significantly in innovation, who seeks ideas or needs and transforms them into successful new products or improvements to existing products for an organization.

How does an organization create innovation leaders within?

An excellent way is to learn the processes and best practices of innovation. These are embodied in the AIPMM Certified Innovation Leader (CIL) credential. The training is perfect for those wanting more focus on the managed front end (also called the fuzzy front) -- transforming ideas into viable product concepts. The certification is for professionals who are driven to lead or participate in innovation efforts for gaining and maintaining competitive advantage. In addition to innovation best practices, the CIL certification provides individuals and organizations with the knowledge, skills, and tools to strategically integrate and align organizational goals with a managed and purposeful innovation culture and process.

As a Certified Innovation Leader (CIL), you will be equipped to contribute to innovation in a powerful way. The innovation body of knowledge, aligned with the AIPMM ProdBOK, is explored in two categories:

(1) those processes and activities associated with the Managed Front End that transforms needs and ideas into business cases for potentially viable product concepts and

(2) the New Product Development process that uses a framework of execution stages and decision gates to transform concepts into products launched to their target market. The body of knowledge includes a total of eight knowledge areas:

Managed Front End

1. Innovation Strategic Alignment
2. Ideation Management
3. Business Case Development

New Product Development

4. Knowledge Creation
5. Project Planning
6. Innovation Development
7. Innovation Qualification
8. Product Launch

Earning the CIL credential has numerous benefits, but the two most frequently shared by participants are:

Gaining a structured and modern understanding of innovation practices. Many participants say the "light bulb" went off during the training and they now see how the various processes and activities fit together and support each other. Innovation is no longer a mystery.

The accountability provided in the training encourages participants to truly wrestle with the concepts. They understand them and the essence of product innovation - they are not merely learning how to pass the certification exam, but are learning how to be innovation leaders.

Other Benefits:

  • Learn and improve your understanding of new product development based on the innovation body of knowledge and proven best practices.
  • Certified recognition of your experience and knowledge as an innovation leader.
  • Distinction that sets you apart from your peers.
  • Increased recognition in your organization and from recruiters.
  • Associating with an elite group of innovation specialists that reside across the world.

Now is the time to become an innovation leader!

An online Certified Innovation Leader course is starting January 8th, 2013. The 2 day in person Product Innovation Leadership Intensive is being offered in San Francisco on February 5 and 6, followed by the Startup Product Summit on February 7, 2013.

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About The Author
Chad McAllister is Founder of Product Innovation Educators as well as the AIPMM Certified Innovation Leader content developer and trainer. Chad is certified by PDMA as a New Product Development Professional and is licensed to provide NPDP training. He is also certified by PMI as a Project Management Professional. He is an experienced product and project manager who has conducted corporate training, workshops and presentations for more than 20 years. http://www.productinnovationeducators.com/

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