Doug Dillon, Director-Sales Learning Development at Kohler Co., leads a discussion.

Association-sponsored professional certification programs have become increasingly popular during the last few years. These programs serve a multitude of purposes for a host of stakeholders. They help employers judge the skills of existing or potential employees, as well as enabling employees to differentiate themselves from others in order to advance their professional careers.

Many wholesalers believe that it is a logical leadership role of the American Supply Association to develop, implement, and oversee a national certification program that will serve the long-term needs of the PHCP and PVF industry, and provide an independent assessment of the knowledge and skills required to effectively run a wholesaler branch. Branch managers are the heart of distributorships, with many wholesalers looking to enhance their own operations by developing some type of certification program on their own.

One of the American Supply Association’s long-range goals is to develop a national certification program for branch managers for PHCP and PVF wholesalers. In pursuit of that goal, ASA convened a task group which began work to develop a national certification program for branch managers. During a meeting held in conjunction with the ASA Education Foundation Trustees meeting in November, the Certification Task Group identified seven knowledge domains in which each program participant will need to demonstrate a strong competency in order to become certified. Each knowledge domain will consist of core curriculum educational requirements that must be completed, in addition to elective requirements. The seven knowledge domains are: Product Knowledge, Operations Management, Leadership Development, Branch Financial Fundamentals, Sales Management, Safety & Health, and Human Resources. After all core and elective requirements have been met, the program participant will be eligible to sit for a national certification exam.

Certification will strengthen a wholesaler’s business by elevating professional standards, enhancing individual performance, identifying individuals who demonstrate the knowledge essential to the practice, enhancing the stature of the profession, and heightening a firm’s credibility within the industry.   For more information, please contact Mike Adelizzi at 312.464.0090 ext. 201