Unlock Professional Success by Mastering “Qualification” Filters

Are you aiming for “credentialed” or “skilled”?

Matthew Doan


Image by PDPics from Pixabay

***NOTE: this article is geared for those in the traditional job market, not entrepreneurs***

The average person spends one-third (!) of their lifetime working (in a professional sense). This often exceeds 90,000 total hours.

With that time investment, coupled with our desire to do well-compensating work that we love, we need to position ourselves wisely. I’ve wrestled with this over the years, constantly asking if I’m doing all I can. I’ve had glimpses of “yes,” but many other times I’ve sulked in despair.

As we seek out new professional roles (I’m allergic to “job”), our aim should be to make each new role progressively more aligned to our future self. Benjamin Hardy, PhD conveys this succinctly:

“…it’s important and powerful to view your future self as a different person [than your current self]…Most people overly focus on the concerns of their present self to the detriment of their future self.”

As we leap to each new professional lily pad, we ideally find work that’s more fulfilling and better compensating than what we’ve previously experienced.

“Easier said than done,” you say. Fair point. What’s the biggest roadblock? Our “dream” roles require being qualified.

This is problematic because “qualified” is in the eye of the beholder. Employers use filters to judge you.

The history of the “qualification” filter

Source: artofmanliness.com

Since the early 1900s, American employers—and most others in the developed world — have valued college degrees. Especially since the arrival of the Information Age, employers have used undergraduate and graduate degrees as the initial filter for determining if someone is a good fit.



Matthew Doan

Design your 9–5 experience to reclaim time, improve your health, and be there for family. Lifestyle & Career Design | Pod: uncageyourself.fm 🎧