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Five Ways to Get the Job When You’re ‘Overqualified’




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Some jobs have assignments that “reach up” and demand more skills or experience. Others are so full of small, menial tasks. Try to understand what is most important and valuable to the employer – what moves the needle – and then tailor your presentation and written pitches toward that. In some cases, it may make sense to pass on some jobs where there’s nothing to interest and engage you.

Sometime yet this year, you or someone you know is likely to be told they are overqualified for a job. The speaker may be a recruiter or a friend, a decision-maker or a drainer of hopefulness. And when they say or hint at the overqualified label, they may mean something about your talents, or about their budget for the job, or about the age of the applicant, or how secure the hiring manager is in his job.

When Vickie Elmer wrote about the “overqualified epidemic” recently for the Washington Post Capital Business, it became clear to her that someone who’s 23 and been tending bar for a year and someone who’s 53 and been out of work for a year both could be called overqualified.

With an unemployment rate at 8.3 percent in July and 12.8 million people jobless, many people will apply for jobs they could have handled five years ago – or would have ignored early in their search. So how do they turn the tide so “overqualified” does not mean out of the running? Here are five suggestions from Elmer featured on Glassdoor.com.

 

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