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Education Vs. Experience – Confusion Between Degree Or Experience

Either you are born engineer or by experience, but not just by degree.

Education Vs. Experience - Confusion Between Degree Or Experience
Education Vs. Experience - Confusion Between Degree Or Experience
Photo Credit: Pictrough / Bigstockphoto

Kumar Sunil

Dreamer & Enthusiast

Creative. One word says it all for Sunil. A engineer, an enthusiastic and conscientious Information Technology consultant by profession, Sunil shares a special interest with entrepreneurship and lifestyle.


  1. Education can be learned, but experience can only be earned.
  2. Majority of Employers are interested in experience and not in grades.

Education vs. experience is an indisputable debate that we have been doing arguments on from ages. No doubt, you need a basic qualification for doing anything properly, but believing a gold medal as a confirmation of expertise is the biggest bubble, most of us live in.

Most of the employers are growing their businesses by not making such a blunder mistake of mixing degree and experience. They are voting for experienced candidates over gold medalists. Don’t believe me; keep reading the facts below.

No wonder, in today’s corporate world your survival depends upon your multitasking abilities; employers would like to hear from you if you can do multiple jobs at the same salary slab.

In academic terms, they are looking for a variety of talents, skills, and personality attributes.

They are really not concerned about your scores in degree, but how are you going to meet your targets and beat your deadlines.

So, whether or not you have a gold medal or degree with you, but for employers, you have the equal chance of proving yourself. Reminds me on an old story that I read in a book.

An illiterate shopkeeper used to sell sandwiches. He started from road-side shop and with his experience, he soon launched a big shop. Then, he sent his son to the top class college of the town for an MBA degree in marketing. He came back as gold medalist. He suggested some management tricks of cost cutting and quantity increasing that he learned in his degree. The old shopkeeper thought, he is a graduate and possibly, knows more than me. He adopted all his strategies and after a year, his shop was sold and he was again selling sandwiches on the road. While using those tricks, he compromised quality and that forced his customers to leave him for permanent.

Let me share a few very interesting figures with you that might deliver a shock to you. During my research about graduates; for a usual graduate, spending 3-5 years in a college is a mandatory requirement. And, after spending those years, next challenge for him is securing a job. We all know, what happens in interviews; no one is concerned about your educational background, the only thing that matters is – experience. Trust me, if you are a fresher; you better be ready for the exploitation.

Literacy rate has nothing to do with employment rate. In India more than nearly 50% of the youth/graduates are jobless. In developed nations like U.K, U.S.A, and Australia, the ballpark figures for unemployed graduates were 2.1%, 6-7%, and 5.7% respectively. My question is – what employers are looking for, if not degrees?

During my research, I get to talk with many employers and what they told me about this situation was really astonishing. To them (at least 70%), they think schools and colleges are not preparing the students according to the global economy.

To them, they don’t want a person with 90% marks in electronic engineering, who got no practical experience with power supplies, PC boards, Videos, and so on. They don’t need a Network Administrator with Linux Degree, but no practical knowledge of handling loads. They don’t need a master of accountancy, who cannot save them more than the rules allow them to. These things, need experience and common-sense.

No degree can make you learn the marketing strategies because, in the market, there are no permanent marketing strategies. It is all about how you can cope up with the consistently changing marketing trends. So, having a degree is not going to make you a good sales manager.

ALSO READ : Job or Business- Career Confusion and Future Illusion

One of the owners told me, “he would prefer an uneducated, but the experienced man in his boundaries, then a gold medalist with no experience at all. “I am not here to teach things; I ain’t running a school,” one of the employer said this to me when I asked him why he is not in favor of hiring freshers.

He further added, more than 80% of employer want to have only experts. They don’t mind paying hugely for getting work done. To them, hiring a fresher, teaching them how things work and then, watching them leaving you for better opportunities is a wastage of money and time. So, hiring a fresher may save them a bit for short-run, but in long-run, this is a loss.

For any job, you need four basic things – communication, critical thinking, problem-solving, and social skills. And, try to prove me wrong if you can. No school can teach these skills, but experience.

I am not saying that time spent on having degrees is useless, all I want to advocate is, only degrees are not going to get you break you look for, you need to be very careful about the experience as well.

And, be it any part of the globe, if your course is not teaching you the things that you must learn to survive in the global economy, hours spent on that course are useless.

Never mix experience with education because every second person is educated, but not everyone is experienced.