6 Reasons You Should Join PDMA

Have you ever been asked by your leadership to prepare a market analysis or a 3-year roadmap to support an existing or new line of business?  Were you in a meeting recently where someone looked and you and asked, “How do we get this great idea to market?”  When was the last time you created something for work from scratch?

If these questions resonate with you, then you already understand the value of a professional association.  However, if you’re saying to yourself, “Hey Ernie, none of those things apply to me.” you are either:

(a) Not a new product development person

(b) Just plain awesome and should really share your awesomeness with others, in say, a professional organization, like perhaps the one I’m writing about here

I’ve recently re-engaged with one of my truly favorite organizations, the Product Development and Management Association or PDMA.  I could wax philosophical about all the virtues of PDMA and the New Product Development Professional (NPDP) certification but I want to keep this post short and most importantly I don’t want to lose your attention.  So, in the parlance of the times, here are the top 6 reasons you should join PDMA and become a certified NPDP:

#6  There are more than 2,000 members in PDMA from all over the world.  Having a group of peers to bounce ideas off of, borrow templates from and sometimes to commiserate with is amazing!

#5  Some certifications are super-technical and some are super-broad and some others are both.  The NPDP certification covers a body of knowledge that spans more than 30 years of practical new product development theory and practice.  If you’re new to product management, it’s a great way to show prospective employers you know something about what you’re applying for.  If you’re a seasoned professional, filling in the holes in your skill set and knowledge that often comes from learning on the job can help propel you to that coveted Chief Product Officer role.

#4  If you’re a product leader, PDMA is a great place to find qualified and talented people to expand your team.  If you’re looking for a great opportunity, connecting with a community like PDMA can help expand your existing network.

#3  As the pace of business accelerates each year, the need to make better decisions faster also increases.  PDMA is rooted in academia and as such members have access to the leading academic journal in the new product development world – The Journal of Product Innovation Management (JPIM).

#2  Each year PDMA holds an annual conference focusing on the entire continuum of product development from ideation to end-of-life and everything in between.  The next conference will be the first week of November and will be in Chicago.  Hundreds of professionals, researchers, thought-leaders and other folks just like you gather to share new ideas, network and have a little fun as well.  The 2017 conference was one of the biggest ones we’ve ever had and feedback was fantastic – you can learn more here.

#1  And the best reason for joining a professional organization and becoming certified as a new product development professional?  You’re investing in yourself.  Joining a professional group helps you build your career and tells the rest of the world that you are a committed professional.  Coming from a guy that has never been a big “joiner” I can say with total conviction after I joined PDMA in 2008 my career took off.

If you have questions about PDMA, product development or, really anything for that matter, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

As always, let me know your thoughts and please share if you found this post informative, helpful or in any way interesting 🙂