Sunday, August 16, 2015

Burn the Degree and Keep the Knowledge

Students are focused on the degree. How can we blame them? Employers are also focused on the degree as a benchmark of knowledge. The degree is certification of learned knowledge and what it stands for is more important than the GPA. It is possible to burn the degree and keep running a business with the knowledge learned.

We see this process occur when students push for every grade they want but didn't necessarily put in the time to earn that grade. When explaining that giving an easy A won't help them learn they roll their eyes and ask to raise their grade again. Love the persistence but if it was placed on the process of learning it would be better time spent.

The employer also gives too much emphasis to the grade when making hiring decisions. If someone is on the honor roll, even if it means nothing, they are of higher quality than a person in the B range who gained more knowledge. The first impression of the grade point average can be a difficult to overcome.

Let us go back a few hundred years and see the fallacy of believing too much in what is written on a piece of paper. Image if you were considering to two candidates to manage your farm. One had a nice looking piece of paper saying they learned, didn't seem to know what they were talking about, had little persistence, and gave up as soon as something gets difficult. The other didn't have this fancy paper but knew what they are doing and were persistent through difficulties.

Of course if it was your money you would choose candidate two. We have become removed from the idea of knowledge versus the degree. It is important to interview candidates, and view the entire person, their challenges and skills in obtaining objectives. If you find a graduate with persistence and character over someone with a high GPA you may have just hired your next star performer.

No comments:

Post a Comment