by Mary Beth York, CCS, CCS-P, CIC
Most of the students I work with to achieve their CCS are individuals enrolled in the course for their own reasons. Sometimes personal – they are finally ready to step up and earn their CCS. Sometimes professional – they need that CCS to keep their current job or pursue the next one.
More and more we are working with teams, sometimes entire departments, to help the individuals to achieve their CCS. These departments often have a mix of old-hands and fresh faces sharing a desire for that coding credential. Sometimes junior staff join the training effort to accelerate their mastery of coding skills. They may or may not be able to pass the CCS on their first attempt, but the process of preparing puts them on the path to ultimate success.
The departments who bring us in to coach their staff to CCS success know that the credential is an important professional indicator because of everything that must be mastered to achieve it. Those with the CCS credential have demonstrated their in-depth and detailed knowledge of the coding systems, the coding conventions and the guidelines. These professionals are on top of their game.
The power of the group is amazing and should not be underestimated. When attempting a CCS, which anyone who has will tell you is a daunting process, it helps to have others going through the same effort at the same time:
Emotional support: Having a friendly face to commiserate with and offer an “atta-boy” at key moments can keep a student on track. “You can do it!” can mean everything when you really need to hear it.
Sharing of insights: We all learn differently and we all have different levels of understanding. Being part of a team means you can ask a colleague to explain why something is the way it is. “I think I finally understand it, let me tell you how I did it” can break through an impasse in learning.
Competition: So long as it remains friendly and supportive, competition is a powerful tool to keep a team focused and moving forward. Hearing “I am going to conquer that assignment this weekend. What are you doing?” might encourage the level of effort necessary to reach the goal.
Preparing for the CCS coding credential is a significant goal. Don’t be afraid to put the power of the group on your side.
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