While sitting in the shared room that is the faculty “office” at one of my schools, a fellow teacher asked me what I'm going to do for work. He says he wakes from nightly anxiety dreams with the conclusion that he has two options: go back to school for another Phd or turn to a life of crime. You know... become an "arch villain." He does worry about costume choice for his life of crime however.
It seems silly and outlandish, but the truth is a lot of academics are only trained for one thing... academia. According to the outside world that is. Truth be told we can navigate the corporate world like champs. We have so many random skills that go along with our gigs that it's laughable. PowerPoint, Excel, meeting planning, managing, technical writing, evaluating data... what do you think teaching is? All that plus navigating the red-tape of schools that are run as the businesses they are.
Unfortunately when HR managers the world over see our resumes they see “advanced degree,” “academic,” “won't take direction well.” It's frustrating trying to dumb down your accomplishments just to get the chance to tell someone how much you've accomplished.
As he and I swapped stories of HR reps and recruiters who out and out laughed at our resumes, I have to say... the idea of deciding what super villain outfit to don became more and more appealing.