UK workers overwhelmingly believe that success at work has more to do with
background than ability.
A survey of more than 1,000 people by business psychology specialist OPP
reveals that at least 75 per cent believe it is more important to be from the
right school than to have relevant experience or to perform well in their
Being overlooked for promotion also breeds resentment. Half of those
questioned think their employers fill vacancies with external candidates
despite competent people being available internally. More than four in 10
believe these outsiders are often less competent than their internal
However, firms don’t appear to promote less able staff over their more
competent colleagues, with only 29 per cent of respondents believing this to be
John Hackston, managing consultant at OPP, said the research shows that
employers should think twice before recruiting from outside their organisation.
"Great people exist within all organisations, it’s just a matter of
finding them. With many rigorous tools available to assess skills and
potential, there is simply no excuse for organisations to overlook or
misunderstand their staff or to recruit people less competent than existing
staff," he said.
"The challenge is to recognise and develop the talents of the people
they already have."