Friday, October 18, 2013

Assumed Authority: A Cautionary Tale

Last week, I wrote a piece about my journey to finding the perfect job. I know many are not so lucky. Some studies even indicate that most people hate their job. I found Dave Kerpen's latest contribution to the LinkedIn blog famously entertaining. The post highlighted the worst job candidate traits uncovered by a myriad of hiring professionals. Some examples were laughable, others were simply human. As I read Dave's post I found myself slightly put off by the assumed self-importance of these so-called hiring experts.

I investigated the marketplace for a solid year before joining my current company. I took any interview I could get to sharpen my skills and understand my options. I must say that the habits of interviewers can be as ludicrous as those of the worst job candidates.

Hiring professionals are the first line of promotion for any company. Make no mistake about it, the hiring process is a two-way street. I understand the notion that beggars cannot be choosers, but I would assume that any company would want to hire the best people and retain them for as long as possible. Many of the experiences I had speak to the contrary.

Don't Even Interview Over-Qualified Candidates
I was shocked by how unprepared many hiring professionals were. In many cases, I was called the wrong name and several neglected to research my qualifications.

If your job requires 3 years experience and I have 15, do you really think I want to go through the process of validating my skills to your commission only, fresh out of Jr. College, recruiter?

Don't Assume The Candidate Is Desperate For A Job
I received unsolicited advice from hiring professionals about how to format my resume and how to position myself in an interview. In some cases, I was never even extended the common courtesy of a "thanks but no thanks" email.

It is dangerous to assume a candidate is desperate for a job or to underestimate any given candidate. In fact, I would venture to guess that those who are most polished in the interviewing process are most used to interviewing.... so hire them, watch them leave in a year, and count your losses. At least your recruitment firm will have a solid spot in your budgeting plan.

Be Aware That Any Given Candidate Could Be Interviewing You Some Day
Whether you are interviewing potential hires, evaluating vendors, or managing employees; you should put yourself in the seat across the desk. Assuming you hold the seat of authority in any of the aforementioned processes is nothing more than a crutch of formality.

Have a little empathy...

I understand we become a slave to our process. I know that we all have directives and standards by which to achieve our objectives. I know our time for nonsense is limited and those asking for employment cannot determine hiring standards.

The greatest companies find the greatest employees. Long term employees come naturally to organizations. The process is effortless; not strained. It's called a natural fit: we've got a great job, you have extraordinary talent, let's have a conversation to see if there is a fit.

It's that simple.....

How much money is lost in the vicious cycle of filling spots for the sake of filling them and then back-filling them again?

Don't Forget to Remember!


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