Tag Archives: influence

Recruiting is Not Like Dating – More Like House Hunting

In the mid 1990’s a prolonged discussion between myself and a hiring manager was going on about why he should select his top candidate. He had interviewed five candidates and told me he had a top choice so I felt that there was not a need to see additional candidates. I quickly thought of a comeback after he stated that his reason for wanting additional candidates was just to be sure he was making the right choice. Seeing his wedding ring I commented “…so, when you proposed to your wife did you tell her that she is the one but that to be sure you need some time to search the market?” His response was a friendly explicative then the ok to extend an offer to our top candidate.

From that point I had compared recruiting and dating off and on with hiring managers over the years. When blogging became popular within the recruitment space I read several articles/posts also making this comparison and wish I had started blogging sooner to trump those that had written and broadcasted my shared comparison.

I now disagree with this comparison. I think a better analogy to the job search for candidates and recruiters trying to find candidates is the house hunting (or apartment shopping) experience. Consider these:

  • People start their house hunting search by going to the internet and either doing a general Google search or going to a site like realtor.com
  • People have specific wants when trying to find a home – location, size, local amenities, school district, culture of the neighborhood
  • People conduct research on the home and neighborhood by viewing the potential residence on-line, reading reviews of the neighborhood (or builder), asking their friends or family members if they know anything about the  neighborhood
  • New listings receive a good bit of activity when first posted then the activity slows considerably with only serious shoppers taking a look

Recruiters and candidates are using similar tools to find, research and gauge if they want to learn more about each other in ways that house hunters and realtors operate.

There is also one other factor that many people forget during both types of searches. The little annoying detail that gets glossed over by company reputation, salary, benefits or that the little annoyance can be fixed once they start (think move in).

What most people do not realize is that the little annoyance becomes a major frustration because just like in an interview or house hunt it only showed up for a brief moment. It could be a light switch in an odd place, or a squeaky stair only stepped on once or twice – it could be a clunky application process or a quick comment that changes were made recently. In these cases the savvy seeker will question what they noticed and typically the recruiter will have their response prepared to put any concerns at bay. However, just like in a home, once within the company that little annoyance is now with you all the time, it grows into a major frustration.

As recruiters we try to brush over the annoyances that might turn a candidate off or away from our opportunity. Sometimes we are confused on why a top talent candidate did not stay with the organization for very long and when asked they state what appeared to be small concerns during the interview ended up becoming major distractions. When boiled down it is that classic “fit” argument. The recruiter should recognize if the fit is not there and the job seeker should as well and be willing to pass on the opportunity.

Candidates are becoming more and more savvy around the job search process and can find out information about organizations through many channels. As recruiters we are typically prepared to answer questions around the small annoyances and are just as savvy in convincing the top talent to join our organizations. My advice is that when a seeker does bring up minor points to treat them as major because those are the ones that will make or break their decision and if you are honest with the candidate it will help move your organization forward.

I welcome your thoughts.


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Scores, Lists and Influence

The #TNL Twitter chat on Wednesday (4/27) was spirited, educational and great humor thrown in here and there. Craig Fisher invited Megan Berry from Klout to help educate the recruiting and HR community about Klout and what the numbers could mean in our space. The questions were flying at Megan and, in my opinion, she did an excellent job responding with valuable information in a quick manner. That had to be tough considering she had on average 120 characters to use [after the hashtag and Twitter handle]. It was interesting to see the spectrum of attitudes, beliefs, strong opinions and snarkiness towards the Klout numbers and other sites that try to show someone’s influence in the social media sphere.

One of the hottest questions/topics was around if people should put their Klout score on a resume, or submit it when trying to land a project or business for consulting work. The responses ranged from suggesting that someone with a high score is spending too much time in social media and not enough time working to if you are going for a social media role then it should probably be listed. An example was given by @2morrowknight losing an account because his Klout score was not high enough in the customer’s eyes – I was a little shocked because his score is in the upper 70’s and he has over 180,000 followers on Twitter (in addition he has blogs, started on-line communities and works for a well known publication) and is clearly influential in the social media sphere.

After his comment the question “What is a good score?” came up a few times in the stream. Thankfully no one said “it depends” (see my previous post) but the answers ranged from the sarcastic to the serious. Some posted they could care less, some almost bragging how high their score was and others admitting their scores were low with explanations on why. As the conversation continued it became clear that it is all subjective and what may be considered high on one site may be low on another. Someone may be influential to one group but have absolutely no influence within another. An example was given showing that someone who had a higher Klout score than a peer did not put much faith into it because the peer is considered to be much more influential. Here is the link to the example: influence is not a number

Is influence getting people to take action, buy a product or change their opinion or approach? Sure, but does a score or being on a list guarantee your level of influence? Should we only listen to those who have the high scores and are regularly on “influencers lists”?

In my opinion, no. Take them for what they are – the measurement of on-line activity. I commented during the chat that my score is around 40 but fluctuates with my activity and that I am a “casual” social media participant. I average two to three tweets a day, one or two blog posts a quarter and it is nice to see people respond to my work in ways that may never be measured by Klout or other sites. I use social media to professionally network, to educate myself on trending topics within recruiting and HR or to seek advice. I also use the tools to interact with people I may never meet in person but share common interests.

The Talent Net Live conferences started with my one tweet response to @DorothyBeach and Craig has taken the event and run with it. I am not trying to boast here but trying to drive a point home. If I had never responded to Dorothy’s tweet and included Craig and others we would have never experienced these great events. That moment will never show up in any scores, lists or influencer rankings and I am happy it will not.

By using the tools to fit my needs and to stay focused on the task at hand I can ignore the scores and lists and take away what is important for me to do my job. By doing so I can move an organization forward.

I welcome your thoughts.

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