The Over-Qualified Paradox

In science-fiction, specifically in the time-travel sub-genre, there is something known as a paradox. For example, in time-travel it is how can a person go from the present to the past if he didn’t exist in the past in the first place. Or to simplify it a little: how can someone or something be this or that at the same time?

Since 2011 I’ve been told or it’s been implied that I’m over-qualified for every job I’ve applied for. The reason I consider this a paradox is that how can I be over-qualified for a job I’ve never done? Now, you can say that each job has a skill-set and that I may have more knowledge than that skill-set requires. But how do I, or anyone else know that? The reason I ask is that although jobs may seem similar in many ways, there are numerous differences in their details and as such, each job has required me to be trained in those specific details. So the smart-ass question I’ve wanted to ask for so long is this: how can I be expected to know something if I’ve never seen it, heard it, done it, or been taught about it? It’s like I’m just expected to immediately pick up something like Neo did in ‘The Matrix’ simply by having it uploaded into my brain.

‘The Matrix’ is brilliant science-fiction but nowhere near reality. So, why do employers seem to think that this is possible? Granted, a lot of skill-sets can be applied to different jobs but those skill-sets still have to be tailored to the individual details of each job. Now I can learn pretty fast and utilize resources and such, which is something employers either see as a potential asset, or an expression of ego. Yep, they think I’m an ego-centric know-it-all that will try and take over everything. Trust me, I’ve never wanted to do that and I honest-to-God don’t think I’ve ever come off like that. I’ve worked with some ego-centric pricks and bitches over the years and they were few and far between because sooner or later their egos got too big for their britches and they managed themselves out of a job.

Getting back to me: I have a resume showing where I’ve worked and when and what I’ve done. But just because I have a work history doesn’t make me over-qualified. Nor does the fact that my job history doesn’t include the position I might be applying for. I mean, it is crazy-hard to change job fields. Doing delivery work is been the easiest segue way I’ve ever been able to do because I didn’t have to interview for the positions (basically, if you have a car, can pass a background check, and use your phone you’ve got the job). But I think climbing Mount Everest would be a lot easier than the amount of groveling or shit-swallowing I’ve had to do to get a job. Now I’m sure my prospects aren’t helped by the fact that I don’t have a college degree as I’m sure that would have helped me over the years but I’ve worked with people with degrees and with some of them, I honestly wonder what their grades were in college. I also know that some people just are just good bullshit artists and can bullshit and back-stab their way up the ladder. I know that sounds nasty but trust me, I’ve seen and heard about crap behavior that never failed to completely surprise me.

Now yesterday I said I’d quit applying for jobs and such. I’ll back-track on that a little if I see something I’m interested in. It doesn’t take long to apply for a job but I won’t grovel in an interview. I’ll be polite and charming and funny if I can, but if I get any implication from an interviewer that I’m over-qualified… I don’t think I’ll let my inner smart-ass loose but I will be seriously tempted.

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