Many people rely on their credentials to get a job. That’s understandable because that’s what we are taught from the time we start looking for work to the time we become management looking to fill positions. Employers look at resume after resume for the person with the right credentials to fulfill the job.
But what is sometimes overlooked in that process is the character of the applicant. While it’s in a companies best interest to find someone with the right credentials for the job, character should be valued even more. In their book Becoming a Person of Influence, John Maxwell and Jim Dornan show us the differences between credentials and character.
Credentials are transient
Character is permanent
Credentials turn the focus to rights
Character keeps the focus on responsibilities
Credentials add value to only one person
Character adds value to many people
Credentials look past accomplishments
Character builds a legacy for the future
Credentials often evoke jealousy in others
Character generates respect and integrity
Credentials can only get you in the door
Character keeps you there
The best case scenario is to find people with both the credentials and the character. Personally, I’ll settle for someone with fewer credentials provided they have the character (and potential) to earn those credentials with time.