Often when you read advertisements for job vacancies or discuss the desired profile with company management, you almost always come across the fact that a person must have at least X number of years of experience in similar jobs and preferably still in the same industry.
Personally, I always challenge this idea and ask to justify why this would be the case.
Every now and then, their demands actually have something to do with it, but very often not. “When our industry is so different” is almost always the most common argument I get, which very often can also be shown quite quickly to be untrue or not relevant.
I would argue that often these specific professional requirements, which can be read in most job postings, are only a consequence of the fact that things are done in a hurry and they did not invest the right amount of time in the Job Description.
Many supervisors honestly never really have the proper time for recruitment, so a job posting is simply based on what the job characteristics of the employee were doing before. How much experience is then actually needed when recruiting a new person and, should you focus on something else anyway? It’s worth listening carefully to what Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has to say. The video intentionally starts at minute 2:20.
In the video, Mark Zuckerberg states: “If you think about it, I started this company when I was 19, so I cannot really say that experience is SO crucial. We’ve been investing in people who are incredibly talented, even if they haven’t done that job ever before.” Facebook’s CEO declares.
Personally, I couldn’t agree more, because even myself, at a very young age, have been promoted to positions that were not usually given to people my age. Of course, next year I will be 36 so little by little I can start saying my actual age out loud, if someone asks for it even in the middle of a meeting, without arousing much wonder.
So if it is not experience, what then? If I were to mention one trait in a person who really matters to me and which I am always looking for, it is the ability to make things happen and to have proactive initiative.
Unfortunately, there are a few of these people available and they are identified relatively quickly. If I just look at my own circle of friends, these people have always stood out from the group. Given where they are right now, it is no wonder that, without exception, they have all progressed very quickly in their careers to very responsible roles.
Try to be open-minded when you are searching for a job, prioritize your attitude and your best fit in a company rather than simply your previous experience in that role.I hope this article will be useful during your job hunt, I wish you the best of luck!