Hey everybody, Don Georgevich here. Have you ever applied to a job that requires a bachelor’s degree and you don’t have one? I know. Me too. I’ve done that before.
I don’t have my bachelor’s degree. I do have an associate’s degree and I have some partial credit hours towards my bachelor’s degree. But I didn’t have it. And I want to tell you that it never stopped me from getting any job that I’ve ever wanted my entire career.
I’ve worked at NASA. I worked there for four or five years; no bachelor’s degree. I’ve worked at Exxon Mobil; one of the largest companies in the world that almost says they require a bachelor’s degree, but I didn’t have one and I’ve worked there in some high level positions. So, you can do it too.
Even me aside; a friend of mine also only has his associates degree; no bachelor’s degree. He also worked at NASA. He also went on to become the Director of Business Development at Level 3 Communications.
So, you can do it. And I’m going to teach you how to do it, how to say it and how to kind of dance around the issue that you don’t have the bachelor’s degree.
For starters, if you were applying to a job and the job description says that a bachelor’s degree is required, but you think that you have enough experience to overcome that, go ahead and apply that job anyways.
Don’t lie about not having your bachelor’s degree. You can just simply list to the college that you went to or if you didn’t even go to college, don’t even list anything; that’s fine. It’s good– It helps if you have some college courses, but maybe you didn’t necessarily finish. It’s okay. It really is. So, go ahead and apply to the job and see if you get the interview.
If you get the interview. That’s a good sign. Now, when you go into the job interview, don’t volunteer to them that you don’t have your bachelor’s degree. That’s just kind of like raising your hand and saying, “Hey, by the way, you noticed I didn’t have my bachelor’s degree. You really don’t want to hire me; do you?” Don’t go there. Don’t say that. Don’t bring it up unless they do.
Now, they might walk through your résumé and they might say something about your education. They might say, “Hey, do you have your bachelor’s degree” or “Where did you go? Did you finish that?” Don’t lie. Just say, “No, I didn’t finish that” or “No, I never started”. And you have a simple answer; that’s fine.
More commonly than not, some people will say, “I started my bachelor’s degree, but I just wasn’t able to finish because” and it was some kind of personal reason; whether they had to take care of sick loved one or they just didn’t have the financial resources; could be anything. But just be honest and genuine about why you didn’t start or why you didn’t finish.
And then the next step here is very critical. This is where you want to find out what their concern is. You want to ask them and say, “I know I don’t have my bachelor’s degree, but what are you concerned about?” And then that will put the ball in their court and then they’ll tell you.
So, once you know what their objections are then you can address them. And you can tell them that, “Hey, because I’ve done all these things in my last job and I’m very good at doing these things” whatever that is “I don’t really need a bachelor’s degree to do that. That’s just a piece of paper. I have hard core experience doing this kind of work”. And experience always trumps education; in my book anyways. I think experience is far more valuable than education.
True, education is good. It’s a great building block. It’s a nice solid foundation. But some people just didn’t have that opportunity to go to college or you know what? Maybe they were just better or smarter than college and they weren’t getting the value that they needed to grow from college and they went off on their own path. And perhaps that’s what happened to you.
So, just because you don’t have that education doesn’t make you any less than anyone else. You are just as good, if not better than everyone else you are competing against. There’s no doubt in my mind about that.
So, once you find out what their concern is, you address that. And you want to make sure that they agree with you; that they agree with what you said and they agree with the reasons why you are able to do this job without the formal education.
I mean, for me, in my case, my background was in technology. And because the technology industry moved ten times faster than college and the world of academia, the experience that I gained working in a technology field– working for companies, was light years ahead of what they were doing in college.
So, my experience (my real world experience) was more valuable than what they were teaching in college. And so, perhaps the same is true for you. Your real world experience is more valuable than what you could have gotten in college. But you just have to show this and you have to understand what the employer is concerned about.
If it’s just that you have a piece of paper that says, “I have a bachelor’s degree” then that’s an easy sell. You can easily overcome that and tell them that, “You know what? I have something that’s a lot better than that piece of paper. I have something a lot more valuable than that bachelor’s degree. I have 10 or 20 years of real world experience doing the kinds of things that you need to be done. And I can do those things for you. And I can do them better than someone who does have a bachelor’s degree”. That’s the kind of message that you want to deliver to an employer.
So, this is your big chance to differentiate yourself from your competition. Because your competition probably has the bachelor’s degree and they have some experience. But you want to show the employer is why your experience is better and more valuable to them than they can get from someone else. And that’s going to elevate your status with them. And they’re not really going to care if you have that bachelor’s degree or not.
And once you can do that right, that’s how you can overcome the requirement of having a bachelor’s degree and get nearly any job that you want; even when they specifically say they require the bachelor’s degree.
And like I said, I never finished my bachelor’s degree and it never once impeded my ability to get any job I ever wanted. No one ever told me they’re not going to hire me because I don’t have a bachelor’s degree. I mean, I got hired at some of the biggest companies in the world– some of the biggest government agencies in the world without a bachelor’s degree.
And I know you can do it too. You just have to show them that you have what it takes. You have to overcome any concerns or objections that they might have. And then that’s it. That’s really all you have to do. And I know you can do it. I know you can do it.
So, if you’d like to go farther on this topic and write your résumé in a way that captures the best of your experience and your accomplishments without a Bachelors or Master’s degree, then I encourage you to pick up a copy of the résumé masterpiece.
This is one of the best guides on résumé writing that exists and you can get it from jobinterviewtools.com. And there’s a section in the guide for people who don’t have the formal education– who don’t have that bachelor’s degree, on how you can create a strong solid résumé that’s just as good or better than someone who does have all about formal education. This is going to allow you to compete a lot better against everyone else who has all of the formal education. And you can download the résumé masterpiece from jobinterviewtools.com/resume.
Alright my friend. That’s all I have for you today. I wish you well on your next interview. Be patient and persistent. Life is not so much as what you accomplish as you overcome. I’ll see you in the next video.
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