Becoming Landscape Industry Certified Takes Planning and Initiative

Article excerpt

Winning bids, impressing customers, earning the respect of crews and employers -- these are just a few of the potential benefits of becoming certified.

I was originally motivated to go for the manager certification for my own personal benchmarking, and to determine if I had the right knowledge to operate a business. I was nervous going into the test because I was the technician who started a company, and it took me a few years of making that transition before I was ready to take the Landscape Industry Certified Manager test.

Now I am constantly looking for educational units to recertify, and it is the basis of my continued education, keeping me up to date on current industry standards, business climate and company well-being. The entire certification program is instrumental in my personal growth and development as a leader and business owner.

Everyone has their own reason for pursuing certification. Whatever the motivating factor, it's important to have a game plan backed by drive and commitment. Here are some steps I recommend to getting and staying certified, as well as promoting your well-earned asset:

1. Research. Take the time to review the certifications that the Professional Landcare Network (PLANET) offers. Talk to those who are certified. Make a list of questions and talk to the certification staff about the differences between the programs, and determine what best fits your job, and meets your current and long-term personal and professional goals.


If you are an owner or supervisor and want to get your staff certified, make sure you select the test that best aligns with the person's job. Here's a current list of PLANET certifications to review and choose from:

* Landscape Industry Certified Manager (formerly CLP)

* Landscape Industry Certified Technician Exterior (formerly CLT-E)

* Landscape Industry Certified Interior Technician (formerly CLT-I)

* Landscape Industry Certified Horticultural Technician (formerly COLP)

* Landscape Industry Certified Lawn Care Manager (formerly CTP)

* Landscape Industry Certified Lawn Care Technician National (NEW exam)

* Landscape Industry Certified Lawn Care Technician (formerly CTP-CSL)

2. Prepare. Once you've selected and signed up for the exam that best meets your needs, preparation is the key The intensity of a testing environment is a challenge for anyone, especially candidates who do not have a solid skill set. …