I have been living the joy of the job hunt for a few months now. It basically consists of hours and hours of sending out and submitting applications into the silent void, with (very) occasional punctuations of call screenings, and even more occasionally an enjoyable interview. (I am serious about enjoying the interviews. I have always found those entertaining. I had a great one today that took place in an adult bouncy house.)
I am looking to work in a different field than I have before. That may not end up happening, but regardless I have come face to face with the demon of being overqualified many, many times over the last several weeks. Here’s the thing though, there is no such thing. You are either qualified for a task/position, or you are not. If you are qualified you can perform the task. There is no way to be too qualified to fulfill a task. The idea makes no sense.
Of course what they actually mean is they (the prospective employers) are afraid. They are worried that the employee so qualified will move along after a brief stay due to boredom, or the arrival of a better opportunity. The boredom factor can only actually be determined during an interview (or at the very least a phone screening), so that’s not a valid reason to cull someone from a pool of potential employees based on their resume alone. Perhaps they are bored to tears of accounting and legitimately want to start over in the food services industry. The second part is actually the company’s problem. Maybe if they actually bothered to make their business a good place to work they would retain employees better.
The lazy path is this focus on so-called over-qualification. A business that actually wants to thrive will work on employee retention.
So, what I have to say is this: Hey employers, how about you work on fostering an environment that doesn’t suck so you can get, and keep quality people and watch your business grow.
Here ends the rant.