What’s Your Take?

Posted by Joe Alonzo, Director of eDiscovery/Computer Forensics at Glenmont Group

I read an article last month that discussed high-tech (present & former) CEOs like Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates and Larry Ellison and the importance of college degrees. As (most of) the world knows, Zuckerberg attended Harvard University and did not finish, starting the Facebook in his college dorm room.   Sure, a very common success story.

Mentioned in the article is that less than five CEOs of the top 50 largest US technology companies do not possess a college degree, conversely more than half of this list has at least one graduate degree.  Jerry Luftman, managing director of the Global Institute for IT was quoted as saying “I’ve met as many successful tech CEOs who have dropped out college as I’ve met folks who have won the lottery.”

The insignificance of a college degree in today’s time is a misnomer. Throughout my career, I have heard many say, “it’s just a piece of paper” and disregard its importance on people entering the workforce. While there have certainly been exceptions, my personal opinion is that it’s critically important to your success. During your four, (sometimes) five or eight structured years in college, you are constantly prepared for tense situations, taught to work under pressure, prepare for deadlines and work with formalized procedures.  As many will agree, these all are very important tools to have upon entering and succeeding in the workforce.

As the old adage goes, “If it were easy, everyone would be doing it”, and I suppose the world would see many more like Steve Jobs, Larry Ellison and Mark Zuckerberg.  The creativity, entrepreneurial spirit and courageous attitude shared by these three are traits that many today have as well,  but are not all that is required for a building a technology giant.

Just as the old Public Service Announcement said back in the 90’s:   Be cool, stay in school.

Joe Alonzo has nearly a decade of experience in executive recruiting and career counseling.  He has helped some of most recognized legal technology and financial institutions expand their workforce throughout his career.   


Glenmont Group is a boutique search firm that concentrates on Professional Services, with a focus in the Legal & Content space. Because we are a highly focused boutique firm, we offer expertise in the industry that other search firms cannot. Our staff has been trained on, employed in or consulted for these industries so there is no learning curve. This means that you will not see resumes off of "job boards" that seem to have little or no connection to the position you are trying to fill. In fact, just the opposite is true. Our process includes a competitive analysis that identifies the top candidates in your given field. At Glenmont Group, we strive to develop and maintain long-term professional relationships with our clients. We believe in a business relationship based on hard work, cooperation, integrity, trust and a sense of humor. We are also active members in our industries by working on or with the Executive board of our industry trade organizations such as; IQPC, EDRM, LMA, PMA, ALSM, ALA, AIIM, ARMA. This assures constant access to a network of those highest quality candidates who are involved in these organizations.

Posted in Advice, Employment, Insights, Job Hunt

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