How to find a job when you’re ineligible

You’ve worked hard at college for years and worked tirelessly to build your resume… only to find that it is your wealth of education and experience that really holds you back from getting a job.

It may seem a particularly cruel fate to be unemployed because you are disqualified, but it can be a reality in a job market where employers don’t want to employ someone they think they won’t be happy with long term.

“If your skills, experience, and job offer are disconnected, recruiters rarely invite you for an interview,” said Joanne Loberg, career consultant and executive coach at JL Careers.

“If they hire you and you convince them you’re happy, their concern is: will you be happy in the long run? Will you start wanting a higher level job and convince them to get a promotion? “He explains.” The main concern among recruiters is: are you at risk of running away?

An important, but not insurmountable obstacle.

If your astonishing credentials are working against you, try these steps.

Re-contextualize your training

As silly as it sounds, all of your grades could have a chilling effect on recruiters.

Even beyond employers who may worry that your academic performance is too high for the unexpected demands of the job, some may be intimidated by your background.

“Sometimes I find that the hiring manager, if he doesn’t have that masters or Ph.D.’s, can have an emotional reaction to the potential hiring of someone who is more educated than they are,” said Mark Franklin, principal practice at CareerCycles and co-founder of OneLifeTools. “He may not even be aware.”

In fact, Franklin has even seen some educated job seekers remove their postgraduate degrees from their resumes.

“I find it unpleasant,” he said. “People work so hard to achieve this higher learning and then they feel the need to hide it.”

Instead, Franklin advocates changing the narrative around your education.

Instead of just listing your qualifications under the “Education” section of your resume, go into details of the skills and achievements education has provided in the “Experience” section. If you have completed academic research, participated in field studies, or published articles in academic journals, advertise those victories there. This way, your academic achievements will seem less abstract and more tangible.

“An employer who can see the experience department before the education department has to spend all those wonderful transferable skills you gained in that master’s or doctoral program before you see the higher degree,” he said. “This is a simple thing I’ve seen work over and over again.”

Tell your story

Whether you’re networking, answering questions at a job interview, or even creating your covering letter, take the opportunity to anticipate and answer any doubts recruiters have about your over-qualification.

You may want to build an underdeveloped skill set so you can try out an exciting new career path. Or maybe even if you’ve been a manager in the past, you’re now looking to thrive in a more technical role.

It is also an opportunity to reshape your experience into something positive.

“It can be challenging to present the right face to an employer in this situation, but I think you really want to emphasize what you’re bringing,” said Lee Weisser, a career consultant and life coach at Careers by Design.

“It might be technical expertise, or the ability to see the big picture, or maybe some maturity that the team needs. Try to understand what the team needs and how you will fit in ”.

Target companies, not jobs

If the job opportunities you get are not commensurate with your talents, it’s time to be a little more proactive. Find and approach an organization that interests you, even if there are currently no opportunities to suit your skills.

“Give them that elevator speech, that branding statement that says who they are. You might say, “I understand you have an open X role, maybe I’m incompetent, but I’m curious what you’re doing, you’re on the threshold of a new thing and I’d love talking to you, ‘”Loberg suggests.

“This could open the door to an information meeting to sit down and talk if there are opportunities in the future.”

Try not to dwell on this

Ultimately, your extensive education and experience should only be positive. And while there is a stigma around over-qualified job applicants, it’s probably not as bad as you think.

“It might be more of a candidate’s perception than an employer’s reality,” said Franklin.

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