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"...begin one of the most rewarding journeys for a learning and development professional..."

Published Mon Aug 28 2023


Who are the more than 4,500 talent development professionals who have earned the APTD or CPTD credential? Get to know the talented and diverse community:

David Elser is an Organizational Development Advisor who earned the Certified Professional in Talent Development (CPTD®) credential in 2019.


Why did you pursue the CPTD?

As a talent and development professional, I wanted to upskill and showcase my knowledge, skills, and abilities at inspiring others to think creatively about their personal and professional development. After achieving other human resources professional certifications, I wanted to further expand my knowledge in talent development for the betterment of my organization, my team, and myself. Mission accomplished by proudly earning my CPTD credential in 2019!

How have you benefited from the credential—professionally and/or personally?

Obtaining my CPTD certification has increased my confidence as a learning and development professional. Since my certification, I have successfully created and launched meaningful training programs, leveraged the latest concepts, such as social learning and knowledge management at my organization, and wrote my first training and development book called Doing the ChoresCreating the Foundations for Success!

What advice would you share with others considering certification?


My best advice is to not wait. Just take the leap and begin one of the most rewarding journeys for a learning and development professional: CPTD certification. I wished I completed the certification earlier in my career. It truly takes your knowledge, skills, and attitude about talent development to a whole new level.

What does having your credential mean to you?

My undergraduate degree in college was in accounting. My CPTD certification was like earning a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) credential for me but in the talent development field of study. It allows me to convey and display my dedication and experience in my profession.

How did you get into the talent development field?

When loading packages for a small package company shortly after graduating from high school, I was quickly promoted to a package handler trainer. It was then when I realized I enjoyed helping others improve their job performance and satisfaction. This led to a wonderful career of developing others from frontline managers to executives at a Fortune 100 transportation company across the US and Canada.


What is the best advice you’ve ever received?

The most valuable advice I’ve received is, “The best answer is often the best question” and “You determine what your success looks like, not others.” Both quotes are from my mom.

What is a great book you’ve read recently?

Well, I have to plug my book: Doing the Chores—Creating the Groundwork for Success!

What is your favorite hobby or pastime?

Traveling and sightseeing

What is the most unusual job you've had?

I grew up on a farm, so there were many, but the most unusual would be detasseling corn for a large seed company.

Have you earned the APTD or CPTD? Share your story with the community.

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