By: Olakunle Allison
Please, if you have to choose between a College degree and a Commonsense degree, choose the latter. Most folks have a college degree (some even have Masters Degree) but are lacking in commonsense. Commonsense however is what wins in the real world.
Now, the common error is for people to assume that commonsense is simply sense that is not common. That is downright false. True, it may not be common – in fact it is not – but that is not the conceptual meaning of Commonsense.
Commonsense is good sense and sound judgment in PRACTICAL matters. It is native intelligence, mother wit, gumption, street-smart, sharp, sharp-witted, shrewd, intelligent etc.
I have seen ‘uneducated’ and uncertified men and women demonstrate sound practical judgement and I have seen ‘educated’ and certified youths display crass stupidity.
I have seen a ‘bus conductor’ (by Lagos standards) who displayed shrewdness in money matters such that he could successfully swindle an Harvard Graduate if the latter isn’t as clever. More so, there are local ‘uneducated’ market women who can outwit many Professors of Economics in money matters. This is what Native Intelligence is about.
Both the bus conductor and local market woman possess what I call Commonsense Degree.
In the real world you deal with real people and real issues – The practicals. You are not dealing with books, theories, charts and curves; the stuffs of which most colleges/universities are made. If those are the only things you’ve acquired, you wouldn’t go far in the REAL world. Your college degree would fail you.
It’s like a man who can draw and read a map, but when he got to the actual territory depicted on the map, he couldn’t survive the terrain. Or, like a soccer player who knows how to score goals theoretically on the game plan, but when he found himself on the field of play he conceded 10 goals. This is what college degrees without commonsense look like. You lack what it takes to win in the REAL WORLD!
In fact, sometimes our college degrees can impede our progress in the real world. College degrees sometimes give people a faux sense of know-how. It gives people an exaggerated opinion of self.
Overly certified and certificated folks often think within an imaginary knowledge box. They are boxed into a particular and predictable mode of thinking. Life shatters this box! Hence, you are left with commonsense when the theorems fail. As they say, in the real world shit happens.
I cannot in all sincerity overemphasize the importance of commonsense outside the four walls of Ivy League Colleges and Prestigious Universities. It is the Success Secret of many GREAT Entrepreneurs, Inventors, Innovators, Thought Leaders who had no college degrees. They never lacked commonsense.
These men and women couldn’t draw and reap maps but they can survive the terrain. They couldn’t strategize for goals on the game plan but they know how to score goals. They often did poorly in the classroom but excelled where it matters – in the real world. It’s called Commonsense.
In the real world, college degrees do not win the race. Practical judgement does.