Workplace Confused with this interview response

Fran0421

Chanel & Chloe lover
Feb 9, 2011
2,273
92
Australia
Hi everyone!

I have completed two degrees and I am a recent graduate in law. I started doing my training ( volunteer for 2 years) to be a lawyer but I absolutely hated it so I thought that I would use my law degree to do something I am a bit more passionate about and that fits my personality. Since then I have been out of work and it has been tough mentally as I am a very energetic person and I want to do something with my life. Btw I have worked in office jobs since I was 17 and I am now 27. I have found that it's hard to make the transition as people automatically assume that because of my degree the normal path is to be a lawyer. Well as a matter of fact I could use it for research, policy, government etc. I have applied for every job no matter the level as I really want to make the transition unfortunately the response is usually I am "overqualified". At a recent job that I wanted they gave me this excuse, is it really an excuse or the truth? That maybe I will get bored or want more money even though it's perfect for me to gain some experience. However, I don't mind this kind of work and I would be humbled if they chose me after all I am just a graduate. Has it happened to you? The person told me that they had another job opening that was higher level and that I should apply. I am not sure if it was too seem nice to soften the blow or if I am in for a chance?
 

ccbaggirl89

Member
Mar 26, 2015
7,806
11,789
Hi everyone!

I have completed two degrees and I am a recent graduate in law. I started doing my training ( volunteer for 2 years) to be a lawyer but I absolutely hated it so I thought that I would use my law degree to do something I am a bit more passionate about and that fits my personality. Since then I have been out of work and it has been tough mentally as I am a very energetic person and I want to do something with my life. Btw I have worked in office jobs since I was 17 and I am now 27. I have found that it's hard to make the transition as people automatically assume that because of my degree the normal path is to be a lawyer. Well as a matter of fact I could use it for research, policy, government etc. I have applied for every job no matter the level as I really want to make the transition unfortunately the response is usually I am "overqualified". At a recent job that I wanted they gave me this excuse, is it really an excuse or the truth? That maybe I will get bored or want more money even though it's perfect for me to gain some experience. However, I don't mind this kind of work and I would be humbled if they chose me after all I am just a graduate. Has it happened to you? The person told me that they had another job opening that was higher level and that I should apply. I am not sure if it was too seem nice to soften the blow or if I am in for a chance?
are you applying for jobs that require a law degree? if not, just leave that degree off your cv. you obviously have a bachelors so that would be sufficient education for other jobs and make you 'less/equally qualified' to others. you could try it for a few times and see if it makes a difference, or to see if you still get that excuse. personally, i never believe in being 'overqualified' - it just means they think you're going to want more money and they cannot afford to pay you in line with your experience/education. i deleted my master's degrees a few times in my early career order to get jobs 'beneath' me and just get experience.
 
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remainsilly

bye-bye
Aug 15, 2014
6,470
9,544
Yes.
Have received, "overqualified" response.
Not in law field.
Interviewed for job totally outside area of degrees/certifications. Because interested me.

Believe response comes because companies want suitable employees.
Which includes feeling both pay grade & work is satisfying.
They do not want grumbling workers. Who quit after 1st paycheck.

As I had not applied for multiple positions, just the one--& had passionate interest + skill--I got job.
And was happy doing it, learned a lot. Then trained someone new & moved to higher position.
Eventually quitting. When management changed.
And I wanted to try new things.

Suggest focus on position you want, doing what you find interesting.
And explain that during interview.
Hope helps.
 
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redney

Lovin' Life!
O.G.
Apr 21, 2006
14,038
5,389
Agree with omitting your law degree from your resume. I think recruiters and hiring managers see it and assume (no matter what you say in a cover letter) law is your career objective and any other job, including theirs, is a stop-gap until you land a law gig. Sorry. Try taking it off and seeing what happens. Best of luck!
 
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Reactions: Fran0421
Aug 14, 2006
2,700
1,498
Canada
I'm in HR and have spent quite some time in recruitment. My advice is unless the position requires a law degree, leave it off your resume.

- Some employers might think that because you have a law degree, you're just applying for this job to "pass the time" until a position in law comes along
- Your two degrees might actually make you appear overqualified
- Depending on the organization and the role, they night not want someone with a law degree. For example, the company I am with now has some unionized employees and we will not hire someone who has a law degree for any of the union roles. It's too risky having someone "playing lawyer" when it comes to the collective agreement.

Hope this helps! Good luck!
 

lovinalotofbags

In for the long haul
O.G.
Mar 6, 2008
2,856
38
South Carolina
Ditto. Leave law degree off. I had my resume done by a professional in HR and he said my resume read like a letter from jail. I burst into laughter. This professional is my brother. If it is not relevant, leave off. Condense, keep it specific to position you are applying for.
 
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Fran0421

Chanel & Chloe lover
Feb 9, 2011
2,273
92
Australia
are you applying for jobs that require a law degree? if not, just leave that degree off your cv. you obviously have a bachelors so that would be sufficient education for other jobs and make you 'less/equally qualified' to others. you could try it for a few times and see if it makes a difference, or to see if you still get that excuse. personally, i never believe in being 'overqualified' - it just means they think you're going to want more money and they cannot afford to pay you in line with your experience/education. i deleted my master's degrees a few times in my early career order to get jobs 'beneath' me and just get experience.

Thank you for your reply, I am so sorry for the delayed response. You have a point I am leaving the law degree in my cv. I will remove it as it doesn't require it in the jobs I am applying for. How do I explain the 4 year gap in my cv though?
 

Fran0421

Chanel & Chloe lover
Feb 9, 2011
2,273
92
Australia
Yes.
Have received, "overqualified" response.
Not in law field.
Interviewed for job totally outside area of degrees/certifications. Because interested me.

Believe response comes because companies want suitable employees.
Which includes feeling both pay grade & work is satisfying.
They do not want grumbling workers. Who quit after 1st paycheck.

As I had not applied for multiple positions, just the one--& had passionate interest + skill--I got job.
And was happy doing it, learned a lot. Then trained someone new & moved to higher position.
Eventually quitting. When management changed.
And I wanted to try new things.

Suggest focus on position you want, doing what you find interesting.
And explain that during interview.
Hope helps.
Thank you so much for your input! I also believe that if you are passionate in interest and skill it will reflect during the interview. I think in a cliche way it Is waiting for that panel that will see the genuine behavior that you have for the position.
 

Fran0421

Chanel & Chloe lover
Feb 9, 2011
2,273
92
Australia
Agree with omitting your law degree from your resume. I think recruiters and hiring managers see it and assume (no matter what you say in a cover letter) law is your career objective and any other job, including theirs, is a stop-gap until you land a law gig. Sorry. Try taking it off and seeing what happens. Best of luck!
Thank you redney! All the responses has made me see something so small that I was overlooking and it makes total sense.
 

Fran0421

Chanel & Chloe lover
Feb 9, 2011
2,273
92
Australia
I'm in HR and have spent quite some time in recruitment. My advice is unless the position requires a law degree, leave it off your resume.

- Some employers might think that because you have a law degree, you're just applying for this job to "pass the time" until a position in law comes along
- Your two degrees might actually make you appear overqualified
- Depending on the organization and the role, they night not want someone with a law degree. For example, the company I am with now has some unionized employees and we will not hire someone who has a law degree for any of the union roles. It's too risky having someone "playing lawyer" when it comes to the collective agreement.

Hope this helps! Good luck!
Thank you so much for your input :smile: Yes playing lawyer is a big thing now, I don't want them to get the wrong impression that because I did law I am a big shot haha. I should stick to tailoring what I have to the job and now just blurt out everything and anything. Just worried it will be hard to explain why I have a gap in my cv and most of my experience is in law.
 

Fran0421

Chanel & Chloe lover
Feb 9, 2011
2,273
92
Australia
Ditto. Leave law degree off. I had my resume done by a professional in HR and he said my resume read like a letter from jail. I burst into laughter. This professional is my brother. If it is not relevant, leave off. Condense, keep it specific to position you are applying for.
Hahah love it! When I think about it, my resume sounds like I am the most boring individual
 

Fran0421

Chanel & Chloe lover
Feb 9, 2011
2,273
92
Australia
On a side note, I did go for another interview with the person that said I was overqualified for a higher position in the company. This one is for a few grades higher although a bit of a catch 22 as it seems I look a bit under qualified for that one and haven't come across that kind of work. Oh the irony. Let's see what happens.
 

applecidered

Member
Jan 19, 2014
1,506
372
Texas
To explain for the 4 year gap, just put in something like "independent consulting". I think that's a huge gap, but you can sugar coat what you've done professionally just to remain competitive.