The Value of an Education – Assertion or Evidence?

value certification

My kids just started back to school this week. Both are in university now and were faced with tough decisions about which courses to take, which degrees to pursue and eventually which career paths to follow.

From time to time I ask senior people that I meet what opportunities exist in their fields. So frequently I hear that you won’t get considered without a master in (insert your choice here), yet frequently when I probe a bit further, they themselves have achieved great heights without said masters credentials.

It used to be that employees became managers and managers became executives, but so often now the trend is to hire new graduates into the management stream, particularly in government.

I think this is what is leading to a partial disconnect that I see almost everyday in my consulting work. Tony Gatto, one of my colleagues put it well.

Management doesn’t know how the work gets done,
and workers don’t know how decisions are made.

To me, an education provides a starting point. Certifications and other credentials are just someone’s –the educational institution or certifying body’s– ASSERTION that the candidate should be able to provide value, but without on the job results, there is no EVIDENCE.

It seems to me that when selecting a candidate, years of experience is just another assertion. A trail of evidence (in terms of results) should be what matters most.


About Wayne McKinnon

Wayne McKinnon works with organizations to change their course of evolutions from extinct to distinct
This entry was posted in Moving to Work of Higher Value. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *