How to Handle the Objection – “You’re Overqualified”

How to Handle the Objection “You’re Overqualified”
This is one of the issues I’m asked about the most when training recruiters and franchisees.

“They are not hiring me because I’m overqualified.  I have excellent experience and advanced degree, but I’m willing to take a lower-level position.”

Understand the Concerns of the Hiring Authority
Employers hesitate to hire a person who is overqualified because they believe the person could be bored or unhappy.  As a result, they feel you will quit the minute a better paying opportunity with more responsibility presents itself.

Examine why you are willing to take a step back.  The response, “I need a job!” will not endear you to an employer.  You must effectively explain why a demotion is a good option for you.

Examine why you want the position. You must use your communication skills to convince the hiring authority why a demotion is a good option. You must create a reasonable explanation.

Some effective explanations could include: 

“My extensive travel has cost my family time for years.  It’s important to me to accept a position that involves far less travel so I can spend more time with my family.”

“When I review my job history, I was the happiest and most fulfilled when I was hands on in operations, not when I was managing others.  This is the reason I’ve decided to focus on an operations vs. management position.”

You need to show why it makes sense for you to accept what seems to be a step back in your career.

Don’t Water Down Your Resume
If you are not honest about your abilities, you might end up accepting a new job that is not a good match for you.  Most employers will take advantage of additional skills you bring to the table, once they feel comfortable with your level of interest.  Often, you start in a job that is a step back but because of your abilities, you end up being promoted to a position with more responsibility and compensation.

Don’t Appear Desperate
If you appear desperate to take ANY job because bills are piling up, you will not get hired.  If you say, “I’ll accept any job, just to get my foot in the door” you will often be eliminated from consideration.  Hiring authorities want to hire the most competent person to perform the responsibilities of the specific job they have available.

You need to show a high level of interest and a high level of confidence in your ability to transfer skills from past jobs into the current opportunity.  It is your job to show the skills you possess that are transferrable, not wait for the hiring authority to figure it out for themselves.

Customize Your Career Summary and Cover Letter
Your resume will be screened out if you have not customized it to fit the opportunity offered.  This is different from dummying down your resume.  You don’t want your cover letter to state you are seeking a management position, when the job you have applied for is NOT in management.  This is one of the most common mistakes made by job seekers.  If an automated system is initially screening resumes and the key words are not found in your career summary – you will be screened out before an actual person even reads your resume.

Often “Overqualified” Is Another Word For “Too Expensive”
When an employer sees twenty years of experience and they only require three, they are convinced that you are out of their price range.  All employers have hiring budgets, and it is rare when they can go above the salary ranges set by management.  If you are willing to take a cut in compensation, it is up to you to explain this to the employer, before you are screened out.

Back

What Clients Say About Patrice & Associates

  • Delanie is definitely someone who can open doors to growth and future. Her commitment and passion speaks louder than words. She made sure there was constant communication and that I always was ready, well prepared and taken care of also. Not only did I enjoy working with her, but she has also created a new world of opportunities. Her work ethics, commitment, connections and knowledge takes a person to another level of betterment and understanding success. Delanie is DEFINITELY someone to keep, respect and appreciate because she makes sure to give you the same in return. She is a guardian Angel!
    Thank you. Respectfully, Anita M
    Delanie is a guardian Angel! 
  • Delanie was fantastic. Everything was smooth and she is fun, she is available and she has great energy. Giorgio Riccobono Delanie was fantastic.
  • Delanie was very professional and understanding during the whole process. She was always available when needed, also walk me through all steps to make sure I was ready for interviews and calls. Giovani Varela Delanie was very professional and understanding during the whole process. 
  • Clint reached out to me at my work one day and he was so passionate,so professional and very helpful. He helped me put together a very solid strong resume based on my experience and my likes. I’m very happy he reached out, very happy to work with him and now I will soon be part of a great company that I see my future been amazing in this industry. Thanks again Clint I will always be happy I chose this company. You made everything much better and much easier for me. Jessy Benitez Thanks again Clint
  • I received a call from Clint, after he introduced himself he told me about a job he thought I would be perfect for. A franchise of the company I had previously worked for. What he was about to find out was I interviewed with them and tanked it. Yes, I tanked an interview with a company I spent 9 years working for. You have to understand I've only had 2 jobs in 20 years so and I was nervous and wasn’t sure what to expect, I also thought my work experience with the company would be doing some of the talking for me. Clint said he would be in touch if anything came up. I thought that was the end of it. A few days later he called and helped me rewrite my resume to get the best of what I did that I didn’t think was that important onto paper. He called with another opportunity and set up the interview. Clint didn’t just set up an interview, he called the day before and spent an hour of his time prepping me for it. We went over the list of questions he sent that he thought would be asked and questions I should ask. I was more relaxed and the interview went well. I got a call 3 days later after they finished up the rest of the interviews and was offered the job. I called Clint and told him the good news, and that he wouldn’t have to deal with me anymore. Instead I was told he would be there throughout my training and the transition into the position. It’s awesome to know that someone is there to talk to if needed.  I truly believe I got the job because of Clint. I know I did on my merits but Clint was a huge help. Who would have thought one and done. I would recommend Clint Carpenter and Patrice and Associates to anyone.   Bethanne Volz
    I would recommend Clint Carpenter and Patrice and Associates to anyone.