Magazine article Management Today

What's Your Problem?

Magazine article Management Today

What's Your Problem?

Article excerpt

Q: I work for a green energy company in a sales position and, since joining three years ago, I have been promoted into management. However, I'm worried that I will be held back because I didn't go to university Nothing has been mentioned but all the senior executives have degrees. Should I try and embark on a part-time degree in my field? I'm embarrassed to raise the issue with my manager.

A: For a great many companies, degrees are important only when they're recruiting. For some professions, of course, they're absolutely essential; but, for many, the requirement that applicants should be graduates serves mainly as a time-saving filtering device. A good degree, almost irrespective of subject, is seen as rough-and-ready evidence of intelligence and application.

But after three years of actual experience and your recent promotion, it's clear that your managers no longer have need of any such reassurance. They've seen you at work and know you can do it. I'd be surprised if the fact that you're not a graduate plays any part in their assessment of you. So by suggesting that you might embark on a part-time degree, you risk revealing your own - quite unnecessary - insecurity: which I sense is anyway more social than professional. …

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