At BSP we constantly come across “over-educated” professionals with very little practical experience. This is partly due to the fact that the macroeconomic cycle has left people without jobs and so they have sought further education as a means to advance their career development. It is also down to the prestigious nature of some institutions that have required candidates to have “at least an MBA in order just to get through the door”.
It’s understandable that companies and organizations use filtering mechanisms in times where candidates are abundant. However recruitment should be about so much more than academic qualifications. In our experience certain positions in companies require skill sets that can only be acquired on the job or are suited to certain personalities. Ice cream salesmen can be more functional than MIT grads when it comes to sales roles.
Numerous articles have been written that try to deduce what qualities do successful entrepreneurs have? or what makes a company successful?
In our experience, the reason this is so difficult to answer is that performance is rarely down to one persons individual abilities but rather how they work as a team towards the same end goal. How they deal with times of stress as a group and adapt to variable environments. Part of the secret to this is down to incentivizing staff properly, part down to creating a collaborative corporate culture, a large part due to hard work and then there’s always a strong element of luck (or timing as the investment world calls it).
So whether you’re looking for a team member, looking for the right investment opportunity or the right career these steps provide a reasonable starting point:
- Assess the market and your needs honestly (where you are weak, what you need to improve, what’s the opportunity cost etc.)
- Ask questions and use others experience
- Assess real value don’t just follow the crowd
- Take a chance – Just Do It!
Learning from your mistakes is often the best way to improve.