It’s been fun blogging here but…
…it gets old when the same people respond over and over and the comments look like a conversation with yourself. Don’t know if people actually read these things or if they think I’m too much of a liberal that no one in their ?right? mind would think as I do about recruiting or if many in our profession just aren’t open to new ideas (FYI, John Sullivan posts a great article on helping military recruiters with their numbers problem but I blogged about doing just this months ago. I?m sure his article will be emailed around but read my thoughts visiting the recruiting station before you go? nothing liberal here, just outside-the-box thinking).
Recruiting is so much more than a search string, a certification, and an ATS. How do I know this? Imagine as I did a few months back, sitting in the lobby of Google’s NY office, filling out a paper form and listening to their receptionist field several calls from folks looking to work for the company. The receptionist’s response after each call was – and I’m paraphrasing (but not too much – this really has stayed with me) here – “What a loser – we’ll never hire this person. Do they really think they’ll work at Google?” Hmmm – I wonder what special techniques the Google recruiting team is teaching its frontline people?
They lost me right there – the rest of the morning was just courtesy. Often in recruiting it’s easy to get lost not being able to see the forest through the trees. Recruiting is not as simple as “If you build it, he will come.” In Google’s case, the recruiters were also unaware of what I would consider some of the best sources (trust me I?m not THAT outside-the-box) in the NY Metro area – I gave them universities, companies, diversity sources, etc. that weren’t on their radar. The shirt I walked away with was nice but I would have preferred a clearer receptivity to some of the things I spoke about that day with the recruiters (yes, and I was warned).
I don’t mean to pick on Google but if you’re out there at $282.75 per share and everyone thinks you’re the nest best thing since Starbucks coffee and Samsung phones (except for the possible exception of Andy Newman at Motorola), every move of yours will be scrutinized. But I think the problem is deeper than Google and its receptionist. Over the past few months as I moved on my quest to leave consulting and go back inside in some type of leadership recruiting (or recruiting/OD) role, I’ve spoken to recruiters who went from hot ‘n’ heavy to not returning my phone calls – or exhibiting similar bad behavior not related to the telephone. What is going on here?!?! I know I’m not an ogre (well, perhaps my ex-wife might believe otherwise) and I’ve done some pretty neat things in my time and influenced a few dozen (or so) people or so but jeez after courting you, can’t recruiters answer their calls or reply to their emails? Do you really want those who care about this profession to name names and treat you the same way municipalities treat deadbeat dads by posting your name and company on the Internet (“Danger Will Robinson, danger – alien forces ahead!)”
How about a recent interview with a software company that was as warm and fuzzy a slate as I?ve ever been party to (yes, the receptionists were great, the hospitality was second to none, and there was a spot of sun in the sky). But not a single specific question was asked ? sure we spoke of hypotheticals such as ?What is the best way to measure quality of hire?? or ?What strategy would you use to improve the relationship between recruiters and their internal customers?? Ask general questions, receive general answers; ask detailed questions, receive detailed answers. Now it really wasn?t the best fit for me but I know I left it all out on the field. But the feedback was that I didn?t give enough detail in my answers. Hello! Sometimes even some fine recruiters can fall into manholes?
Been a member of the ERE since 1998 and so much has changed but far too much has stayed the same. I appreciate the very fine folks at ERE for giving me a mouthpiece but like the deadbeat recruiters I spoke about earlier, if so few are going to engage in meaningful conversation, then it?s time to move on. So while you?re experiencing withdrawal from not being able to read my blog, why not read Marty Snyder?s ERE blog ? he?s a hoot and a great thinker to boot.