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I specialise in everything

Just found this on LinkedIn…

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Would you want to have your beer produced by someone whose specialisation is also refining and distributing oil and managing waste?

What’s more irritating: why would anyone believe this would make a good impression?

Is automatic profile scanning and filtering also actually taking the decision who would be a fit for an opening?

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    • Hopefully.

      Although I am close to be sure that most of us have already worked in teams with such “specialists”.

      They do get hired.

      Maybe by management with similar qualifications!? 🙂

      • Lars Breddemann wrote:

        Maybe by management with similar qualifications!? 🙂

        or (and?) by management with similarly unrealistic expectations for an SAP Platinum consultant to be available on site and on demand (with no retainer, of course, we’ll only pay for 2 hours a month when we actually need him/her, but we won’t say when those 2 hours will happen or maybe it will be 0 hours or 2 weeks, who knows – we’ll call you) preferably for just a notch above minimum wage. And then they happily report to the executives – “we hired a consultant that will solve all of our problems!”. Naturally, all job still will end up being done by the permanent support staff while “mega-consultant” posts “Dear gurus, explain me about SAP SD urgently” on SCN.

        Also reminded me of this old gem. 🙂

        • Haha, love it, that reminded me of how some of our job postings have appeared in the past. Oh, and actually specify which language the candidates should be expert with? Sorry, not in the position description, so relegated to a line or two of “additional comments” by the hiring manager. We have gotten better, but it used to be a real struggle to put out meaningful job ads that a candidate could actually decipher to determine if they were qualified/interested or not.

        • Hi Jelena,

          that gem is excellent, first time i’ve seen it.

          Regarding our Platinum Consultant colleagues, it’s not fair to tarnish all with the same brush, and I’ve met some very nice Platinum Consultants, for example my good friend, Philip

          Perhaps today should be hug a Platinum Consultant day, so, if there’s a Platinum Consultant in your Team go and give them a hug and share the love.


          • Hi Andy, what I was saying that the management expects a Platinum Consultant, but what they get (with all the unrealistic requirements) is obviously the “jack of all trades” above. Sorry if this was unclear. At some point I was a consultant myself and there are definitely as many varieties of the consultants as there are humans. 🙂

          • Hi Jelena,

            got that, but thanks for clarifying, I was more understanding thinking of the situation that the Management got the Platinum Consultant in, and finally in the end it’s the staffers who end up solving everything, which I know happens all too often.

            But, Platinum Consultants are human too, and you’re right it’s not always the Platinum Consultant’s fault, and I hope you’ve hugged yours today 🙂


  • Hi Lars,

    sad but true, that is how contracting works in many ways nowadays with help of something called “recruiting agencies”. There are a lot of announcements like that and even the same amount of “consultants” who know everything .. and trust me, they get hired more often than the real specialized ones 😉 (*sing* money, money, money)



    P.S.: I searched for that phrase on LinkedIn at the end of my comment writing and what a surprise – it is related to “recruiting agencies”. 😈

    • Sure it is a about recruiting, Stefan. 🙂

      Funny though is this:

      Everyone knows this is a scheme to get into the pile of profiles that are not discarded right away.

      Everyone knows that it’s simply not possible to have this broad mixture of expertise.

      So in turn everyone knows: this profile is ‘tuned’ to say it nicely.

      Yet, people with this profile get hired.

      And not for low-profile jobs but typically in areas where you need to trust their expertise.

      A little later down the project the trouble starts and the same Everyone from before claims that there are no good people available anywhere and/or that the software is crap.

      To me this would stop if such people would simply not be hired.

      That’s not to say: only hire folks with 10+ years expert experience.

      But instead to be honest about tasks, duties, expectations and opportunities.

      Well, it’s likely a  good idea that I am not in a position to hire anyone 😀

  • Experience tells me you never want to pretend you have skills you don’t – someone might actually ask you to do something you don’t know anything about! 😉

    • Hi Gareth,

      on the same lines, wise old man he say, be careful telling people what skills you do have, someone might actually ask you to do something !


      • Exactly!

        Years ago, I started working with 7 others as mainframe apprentices at a large manufacturer.  Over time, a number of us were out-sourced to a large consultancy and had to create skill profiles on their systems.  One of the guys ticked a box against some obscure skill and within weeks was off the other end of the country on a project, never to be seen again.

        I’m always cautious with what I claim to know 😉

        • Yeah, think about all the folks who, in 1999 or so, still had “Cobol” listed on their resumes. Suddenly that’s what they were doing, making old mainframe applications Y2K compliant, when they would much rather have been coding in Java or C++ at that time. Of course, in 1999 if you actually had Cobol skills, there was some money to be made.

          • I was one of those people – I’d just started as a mainframe apprentice in a large, global manufacturer who were still running on mainframes.  My first experience of the IT world was the millenium bug coupled with a fresh SAP implementation – baptism of fire 😉

  • If you follow the Career Center forum closely you wouldn’t be so surprised.

    It’s almost everyday when you see a thread like:

    I’ve completed my ABAP training. Please let me know what other modules I can learn…


    PS: Here’s the perfect example: ABAP + ?

  • Hi Lars,

    you gotta see the funny side.

    One of the nicest things in the SAP area is, if someone says they know everything they are lying it is simply not possible to know everything, this is a simple truth which will never change.

    I’m humbled on a daily basis by what I don’t know.


    • Spot on Andy!

      Life-long learning is not a choice in this line of work. It’s imperative.

      Besides that, I think you’re doing quite well *g* 😉

      Cheers, mate.

    • long way to go yet, there’s more I don’t know than I do know, it’s always been that way, it’s like the horizon, you can see it but you never get there

      the journey is the destination


      • No doubt about that.

        Just seeing how much actual knowledge about the world has been added in the nearly twenty years since I finished high school is mind blowing.

        “Common” knowledge about biology, nutrition, bio-systems, economics, information technology, psychology and e.g. sociology had multiple turn-arounds and just to keep up with the current baseline knowledge is an exercise that takes a lot of time & reading.

        – Lars

  • Lars,

    we call it ‘Jack of all trades…’, but i’ve been guilty myself having worked in refining, electronics, pharmaceuticals, banking, and then some. SAP has this great ability to let you work in many industries (not really at the same time, but still).

    databases (and bots) hold no grudges, so here i am brushing up on something i’ve been qualified to do15 years ago, but still learning and finding myself saying ‘i don’t know’ more often than the other way round. what i do know is how to read between the lines and size someone up with this or other claim.

    Bis dann,


    P.S. i’m done with the book, so my second read will be more ‘informed’.

    • That’s a good point – as a consultant I’ve worked in lots of different industries and SAP areas but I’d never claim to be an expert.  Jack of all trades definitely… 🙂

      • I’d say this is the key point here.

        Is it possible to take the knowledge and expertise in common technology and use it in different industry sectors? Sure, no doubt about that.

        Being an expert in the respective industry however is something completely different.

        You’d know how business works there, you know their culture and you know the people in the industry.

        You literally have to be one of them to a certain degree.

        And, like all groups of people, being “one of them”, being included also has a notion of exclusivity: others, who belong to other groups are automatically not part of your team.

        So “jack of all trades” is nice and fine, but it doesn’t make industry experts.

    • Gregory Misiorek wrote:

      P.S. i’m done with the book, so my second read will be more ‘informed’.

      I wish writing it was done at that pace… 🙂 .

      Hope you enjoyed it.

  • He seems to be a SAP_ALL guy 😆

    Poor guy nothing wrong in his discerning…. he might have thought as he has the ‘profile’ he can perform all tasks in the SAP system 😉