2 min read

What have you published?

Yeah, two/four years is a long time to learn those topics, especially in today's world. However, couple an education (structure) with personal publishing projects (creative), and those individuals will have the skills and aptitude ready to tackle any real-world challenge.
What have you published?
Photo by AbsolutVision / Unsplash

"I don’t think the college degree is necessary for marketing roles, period. We learn hard skills, critical-thinking skills, and soft skills on the job. We can learn how to present to clients on the job. We can learn how to carry ourselves in front of clients and act professionally, and write proper emails, on the job,” Silver told us. She added that she doesn’t know if universities can teach those things."

https://www.morningbrew.com/marketing/stories/2021/08/25/marketing-roles-need-require-college-degrees

Let's see, a person 'who has both an MBA and a JD from Harvard' thinks a college education is important for a marketing role. Got it.

And a person who worked their 'way up the corporate ladder without a bachelor’s degree' doesn't think a college education is important for a marketing role. Check.

Feels like a fairly straightforward article.

However, where are the folks in the middle? What's their take on whether marketing roles require an education degree?

(The line about requiring 'a bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience' in the job post seems a bit of cop out. If I haven't been to college, how do I know what that equivalent experience is?)

The middle.

Why don't we find folks who have a college education who don't believe it's necessary to land a marketing role?

And, if they are also hiring managers, ask them what does equivalency mean? What are they looking for to fill a marketing role?

While the perception is that marketers are responsible for 'making things pretty', that's only a sliver of the role's responsibilities.

  • Can you manage projects?
  • Do you have the confidence to hit the 'send' button on behalf of the entire organization?
  • Can you fix a mistake in real time, knowing 'the world' is watching?
  • Do you understand how data is structured?
  • Can you work with other departments?

Sound like any other role at an organization, with little quirks based on outcomes?

Yeah, fairly similar.

Do those other roles require a college education to be successful?

What have you published?

Maybe a better focus is on publishing. What have you published?

  • A TikTok video
  • A blog post
  • An email newsletter

Publishing something gives managers a clear understanding and appreciation for process, comfort, platforms, etc.

From there, so many questions can be asked that are more relative to the role than whether the candidate finished a college degree:

  • How did you come up with the idea?
  • How did it make you feel?
  • What was the purpose of the published item?
  • What did you learn from it?
  • What did you change in the second published item from the first?
  • Was the published item successful?
  • What tools did you use to publish the item?

The responses to these questions are more impactful to today's marketing needs and roles, and will give the hiring manager a much better appreciation of how the candidate performs when the structure of a college education isn't always available to lean on.

Challenging the real world.

A college education is important for certain people. It helps build structure, a fundamental understanding of individual topics and a better appreciation of what the market expects.

Yeah, two/four years is a long time to learn those topics, especially in today's world. However, couple an education (structure) with personal publishing projects (creative), and those individuals will have the skills and aptitude ready to tackle any real-world challenge.

And they will excel in the discipline of marketing.