The status of our economy has certainly had its hits, both big and small. Even the tiniest hit hurts – it tightens wallets, wreaks havoc on budgets, but more often than not, obliterates pride. Accountants with 15 years of experience are taking ad spaces out in the classifieds – women with a bachelor or master are babysitting for spoiled brats whose parents have yet to feel the economic blow. The economic condition is affecting spending habits, but more importantly, is responsible for a waning sense of worth.
Professionals with 10 years of experience are competing with entry-levelers for positions – this should not be happening. It is not fair to either party. Recent grads are bringing to the ring vast knowledge of emerging media, new tactics and fresh lessons; seasoned pros are representing traditional knowledge and present impressive track records. Both are capable, in their own sense, of completing the job adequately.
So what ends up happening? The seasoned pro gets the job over the fresh-faced graduate, but will quickly grow unhappy with the reduced pay and revoked responsibility. For a person who has spent the past 10 years closing deals and launching campaigns, the thought of merely monitoring placements and analyzing coverage may induce a slight gag reflex. A position like this could provide key training to an up-and-coming young professional; instead, it is being given to an overqualified individual who will undoubtedly leave the position after a whirlwind tenure.
I am not criticizing organizations for choosing the candidate with several more years of experience, but perhaps quizzing candidates on innovative trends may produce surprising results. In this new economy with fewer positions, I firmly believe that the hiring process should undergo a makeover.