I received this note from HR Puke!
I wanted some advice for a mid-40’s professional who has worked hard to become the lead HR professional (VP / Sr. Mgr. etc.) in various organizations.
Now, I’m like everyone else — out of a job. I have great skills, ideas, dislike most HR people, etc. but don’t have my bachelor’s degree (been degree seeking for 17 years). I worked my way up, used my mentors, raised a family, yadda, yadda, and put school way on the back burner for lack of time.
From your perspective, how do I overcome this during the initial resume submission stage?
Pukey, I hate to tell you this, but VPs of Human Resources have degrees. They are degreed from local colleges, ivy league colleges, and state schools. I know some who are degreed from places like Davenport and University of Phoenix. Very few make it to the top without the degree. Very few stay on top without it, either.
One of the fastest growing groups in college are women, over 50, who are returning to school. Use your unemployment as an opportunity to go back to school and finish the degree you’ve been seeking for seventeen years. It’s time. You’ll meet new people, connect with a new network of colleagues, and you might be able to receive enough financial aid so that you can focus on school and pay some of your basic bills.
Tell prospective employers, “I worked my way up, learned from my mentors, raised a family, and now I’m returning to finish my undergraduate degree.”
Makes you look tough, scrappy, and not afraid to work hard.
So start looking into fast ways to finish your degree. You will end up with skills that will carry you beyond HR.