Experience: A Mirage

I think most resumes are just accessories; and that many of those we consider “experienced” aren’t necessarily better than the newbie.

Who says an analyst can’t manage someone? Why does a “leader” of a team need several years of experience in a specific role? Who says that the 35 year old can lead better than the 25 year old?

Experience comes with age but wisdom and growth do not. The latter comes only when there’s intentional pursuit for improving oneself.

Here are some half truths.

I’ve done it more than you.

This is a version of “Been there, done that” and applies to any situation. We think the person with 2 internships and several years of experience in the profession can do more than the college graduate. Yet, I have seen too many cases in which the “kid” learns and does the job faster.

More Experience = Better Manager.

There’s a tendency to think that a subject matter expert or more knowledgeable person is better prepared to manage than a rookie. Unfortunately, we all know some veteran that can’t manage him/herself, let alone a team.

Experience = More Knowledge

I have several years of experience using the Internet but I have no clue as to how it works. Similarly, I have seen many well written resumes; and heard many claims about past experiences, but when the time comes, the individuals can’t really explain what they learned or do the job themselves.

Some people experience life but don’t really live it.

The next time you find yourself using experience as an excuse to justify certain actions, you must ask yourself “what evidence do you have that shows you know how to deal with the situation at hand?”

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