Are you overqualified for this job? Is a question often asked of older applicants, or applicants who are applying for a job that could be seen as being lower than their last position or would be earning less than they could be. It is often the case that the interviewer wants to ensure that you aren’t using the position as a “stop gap” during a period of unemployment, or perhaps are after their position and you just might be qualified enough to do that. Diplomacy is the key to answering this tough question. It is a good idea to reiterate why you want the job that you have applied for, allay fears by stating again that for you this is a permanent change, and that your qualifications make you perfect for the role in question.
Are You Overqualified For This Job?
“I have worked in this position carrying out this role for so long now that I feel I’m not ‘overqualified’. I am just qualified to carry out my duties correctly, and pass on advice to others around me to assist them in carrying out theirs. I have done it so long that I understand what works and what doesn’t, and can make sure that perhaps younger, less experienced colleagues don’t make wrong choices.”
“I did thoroughly enjoy being the restaurant manager but found that I spent a lot of time in the office, away from staff and customers, and really missed the interaction. When the restaurant relocated I decided not to go along as I really want to get back in touch with staff and customers, which is why I am looking to take on your supervisory role. I won’t be moving on elsewhere, and won’t be trying to take anyone else’s position, or withholding anyone else’s potential to be the manager, whilst having all the experience to ensure the restaurant runs smoothly. I see that as a win-win situation.”
“The reason I have applied for this position is that I am looking to create more of a work/life balance. I have all of the skills and experience necessary to hit the targets you require, whilst leaving myself more free time to enjoy with my family. I am more than happy to agree to a minimum term contract in order to show you that I don’t intend to leave if offered the position”
“I have seen how rapidly your company is expanding, and having to set up a new office to accommodate that with new staff is going to attract a lot of candidates like myself, who will be happy to come in at a step under, knowing that we ‘hit the ground running’ and will make the business a success much faster than people hired purely only qualified for the role in question. You will get a much faster, stronger result by hiring someone who is more than qualified.”
Photo by: JonoMueller