Monthly Archives: January 2016

12 Reasons to Certify

“Hey Kyle, something’s wrong with the DC!”
“Hang on … Ok … Hmmm … Let’s try this … I call upon the great powers of CERTIFICATION!”
“Nope, didn’t work Kyle.”
“Um, well that’s all I remember from my course.”
“Kyle, you didn’t actually sit the exam, did you? You sat all those courses and didn’t get certified.”
“Well, I didn’t really think I needed to, besides it didn’t help, you just saw that!”
Kyle’s right you know. Just sitting courses doesn’t mean you’re now ready to go and dazzle the world with your cutting edge troubleshooting skills. You won’t shock and awe prospective employers with those Certificates of Achievement from all your courses.
Still, we need to answer Kyle: he didn’t really think he needed to. So, let’s look at 12 Reasons to Certify, number 13 is your take-away and action plan.

  • Certified IT Professionals earn more MONEY. Blunt, but true. And seriously, who wouldn’t like more in their pay packet each month?
  • Experience is valuable, and what a great way to showcase this with your MCSA/MCSE Certification history.
  • Renew and resit Certification exams, keep up to date and current with the latest solutions from Microsoft.
  • Talking to your customers, or even your own company’s CEO/CFO/CIO, carries much more weight.
  • IT Professionals need industry standard Certifications, not generic.
  • Failure is not an option (thanks Lester!). You tried to certify once and failed, so that’s made you wary of trying again. Maybe you need to attend a training course at a CPLS – oh, say the biggest and most awarded CPLS in Australia, DDLS for example. Motivated and experienced MCTs will help you fill in those gaps in your knowledge, and teach you that failing an exam simply means you haven’t passed yet!
  • Indicate to your employer that you would like to validate the training courses you’ve attended, they may even pay for your Certification exams.
  • Certification = Credibility. To pass and become a Solutions Associate/Expert means you really do understand the whole solution, not just a product.
  • Achieve personal goals, and through those personal goals you’ll probably also achieve your company’s goals.
  • Take a look at Seek or LinkedIn, and see how many IT positions do NOT ask for Certification
  • Increase confidence, both in you, and within you. Cynics will say “ah, it’s just a piece of paper”. Well pffft to them. It’s my hard earned piece of paper that shows I passed a rigorous test of my understanding of solutions, and it DOES mean something to me. Seriously, even as a 21 year veteran of Certifications, from Novell to Lotus to Check Point to Microsoft; I still get a buzz and a feeling of “yes, I do know my stuff” whenever I achieve or renew my Certifications.
  • Origami.
  • Now grab your planning calendar for 2016 and mark that first exam down, then pace yourself from there. You’ll be a Solutions Associate, then a Solution Expert by the end of the year.

What, the 12th reason doesn’t make sense? There’s a little lesson there. I honestly wonder just how many people read through each of those reasons, how many said TL;DR? Well, if you did read that far, then if nothing else, the paper your Certifications are printed on will make some really cool origami <g>. Have a great 2016, and a big shout out to my mate, Kyle Rosenthal who appeared in the opening sentences as my “demo”.

Wayne McGlinn


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why corner an MVP? Wait, what is an MVP??

Happy New Year all!

My first post for the year is to explain what a Microsoft MVP (Most Valuable Professional) is, and why we are worth cornering. The origins of the MVP program date back to the early stages of Microsoft’s support and monitoring of the Usenet and CompuServe Developer Forums. One of the independent developers on the FoxPro Forum (Calvin Hsia) kept a list of the number of postings by person, including information on messages both sent and received. Making the Top Ten on Calvin’s List was a worthy achievement, whether a blessing or a curse was cause for discussion in itself! As the story goes, Microsoft saw the list and used it as a way to identify significant involvement with assisting the greater User Community. And so was born the MVP Program.

Microsoft MVP

“Today, exemplary community leaders around the world were notified that they have received the MVP Award! These individuals were chosen because they have demonstrated their deep commitment to helping others make the most of their technology, voluntarily sharing their passion and real-world knowledge of Microsoft products with the community.” MVP Blog Website.

“Dear Wayne McGlinn, Congratulations! We are pleased to present you with the 2016 Microsoft® MVP Award! This award is given to exceptional technical community leaders who actively share their high quality, real world expertise with others. We appreciate your outstanding contributions in Windows Expert-IT Pro technical communities during the past year(ed. bolding added to original text) The Microsoft MVP Award provides us the unique opportunity to celebrate and honor your significant contributions and say “Thank you for your technical leadership. At Microsoft, we believe that technical communities enhance people’s lives and the industry’s success because independent experts, like you, help others extract greater value from products and technologies through the free and objective exchange of knowledge. As a Microsoft MVP, you are part of a highly select group of experts that represent technology’s best and brightest who share a deep commitment to community and a willingness to help others. ” extract from the official email notification. Mike Hickman, Director Community Engagement, Microsoft.

The MVP Award is earned each year, we cannot rest on our laurels and are continually assessed. So, in a nutshell, if you see anyone wearing an MVP badge at any technical conference, corner them! If you know of classes being taught by an MCT who is also and MVP, sign up! Why? Because we have proven the depth of our knowledge, because we are there to help anyone and everyone, in any way we can. I do not know all the answers, but I guarantee I can get hold of someone who *can* give an answer.

Wayne McGlinn

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