In the present job market, there have been countless stories of people with MBAs taking work as grocery baggers and house cleaners – of overqualified individuals unable to find work looking to other industries for a paycheck.
It used to be a commonly held belief that hiring an overqualified person for a job would eventually result in him or her leaving at the first opportunity. But according to HR Morning, that conventional wisdom may be wrong.
A study by Dr. Anthony Nyberg, based on analysis from over 25 years of observing 5,000 workers, has found that those with higher cognitive abilities in positions that don’t require much brain power are less likely than others to leave.
Another nugget of knowledge revealed by the study: Most mentally demanding jobs produced job dissatisfaction at three times the rate of the simplest jobs, reports HR Morning.
The economic situation may not be the only reason for “high-intelligence” job candidates to seek employment in a simple job. It can sometimes be for a lifestyle or health choice, or an affinity for a company’s values.
Human resources management should investigate why someone is applying for a position he or she is seemingly overqualified for before writing them off. Maybe he or she wants to change fields and knows that this means he or she will have to start at the bottom? Maybe the applicant isn’t dependent on a job title for self-esteem? Maybe money is tight and he or she needs a job quickly?
Whatever the reason, don’t write off brainy candidates who apply for simple jobs – they may turn out to be some of your most valuable employees.
Has your human resources department hired overqualified workers lately? If so, how has it turned out?