How much do you value work experience?
More specifically When recruiting (or back-filling internally) for experienced hire positions, how much does four years of experience matter versus eight? What about eight versus twelve? Twelve versus twenty?
…Of course, people learn at different paces (and certain experiences are much more 1. We could endlessly assign conditions here: How experienced is the team being managed by the new leader? How much room for error does the manager have to get through growing pains? Is this a divisional switch or will the new manager be staying in the same functional space? All good questions that might change the answer, but I’ve only got 500 words before you lose interest so I’m trying to focus on the larger concept. valuable than others)… 1 but let’s assume for the purposes of this thought exercise that both candidates are of similar intelligence and background. Let’s also assume that the point they’re at in their respective careers is identical scope/scale wise.
i.e. The person with four years’ experience in our above hypothetical is a Project Manager with two years of experience in her role, and conversely the person with eight years’ total work experience in our above example has four years’ experience as a Project Manager.
If you’re hiring for the next step up here (a Program Manager), how much value do you assign to that extra two years of experience?
I’ve written about how to know if you’re ready for the next level of work/responsibility before, and I feel fairly comfortable saying my position 2. For those uninterested in reading my post above, I basically think you can largely (but not completely) compensate for lack of experience with conceptual and technical knowledge. here is well defined. 2
What do you think though? Does experience matter? To what degree? Why?
Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.
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