Don't need it if your truly good at what you do. I don't care what anyone says, if you can do something well, better then someone with a MBA and all you have is a 2 year Degree you can still make more then them. The thing you Must do is prove to them that you have the skills and ability to do it. A degree clearly shows this to a boss, but if you get them to allow you to demonstrate your skills then they should still hire you. What I found interesting is there is always competition to what your are doing. If one will not pay you as much or more then what you should be paid the other guy, at a lower level who needs to achieve more then its competition will pick you up.
If that isn't the case there is a famous story that proves my bottom point. Microsoft was started by a college drop out. Point?
Book learning without a basis in a career path will NOT guarantee being hired or promoted.
You can earn a degree without ever having a job, if you really want to.
What will earn you the job is the whole package. Your prior job skills, your social skills (a likeable person is more likely to receive positive attention from superiors) and your overall performance in your position are far more valuable than the degree you spend tens of thousands of dollars on.
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