Deciding what kind of certification is most valueable also depends on what kind of networking equipment you want to work with. What kind of shop does your company use, or which kind of equipment would you like work with or specialize in? If you are never going to be working at a company that uses Cisco's routers and switches, a CCNA won't serve you as well as a generic, vendor-neutral networking certification, like Network+.
Once you determine your interests and what type of network equipment you want to work with or specialize in, I recommend investigating our networking certification survey to gain an understanding of what valid certifications are out in the market for networking professionals. All of the certifications listed will get you to where you need to go depending on your interests and needs.
This piece on choosing a certification is a bit seasoned, but the principals still stand: find out your strengths and compound those with certifications.
To note, I've heard this from many industry researchers and analysts: In a poor economy, it's better to be a generalist -- especially someone who also talks business and can translate network usage into cost. As an economy booms, specialization is the trick to looking good to potential employers.
I hope that helps! Good luck with your certification search!
This was first published in September 2009