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Interviews: Faberge Egg or Soccer Ball?

As an executive recruiter, I talk to a lot of candidates. Hundreds in a weeks’ time so it continues to amaze me (to the point of scratching my head) why a company would treat a potential candidate in the manner that they do. So, if you are in the position of recruiting and attracting candidates for your firm ask yourself this question: Do I treat this candidate like a beautiful and potentially valuable asset to our firm (think Faberge Egg) or do they leave our firm feeling like a soccer ball being kicked down the hall?

Clues you might be a ‘Faberge Egg’ interviewer:

You sell them: You spend the first 30 minutes sharing the wonderful attributes of working at your company and why it’s a great place to call home
It’s easy: Your online application process takes less than 10 minutes to complete
You keep them in the loop and follow through: You make every candidate feel welcome and valued throughout the interview process by constant communication throughout
You send THEM a thank-you for taking their time to consider your organization
You close the loop: You follow up with every candidate that you do not hire with a call or an email to let them know you have hired someone else

Clues you might be a ‘Soccer Ball’ interviewer:

Your first interview feels like a trip to the dentist: You spend the first 30 minutes grilling the candidate on their reasons for leaving each job and you have a 5-part interview process that includes a 2 hour panel interview (think firing squad)
Your application is onerous: Your online application is more complicated than filling out the FAFSA
Your process takes forever: Your interview process drags on for weeks and months as you work through “your process” of “screening out” candidates who are not worthy
You leave them hanging: You end the interview with “We’ll be in touch if we are interested” and never get back with the candidate
You are discourteous: You bother don’t respond to an email from the candidate thanking YOU for taking time to meet with him
You are rigid: You make no accommodations for before work or after work interview times (if they want to work for us badly enough, they should take a vacation day to meet with us when it’s convenient for us)
You don’t value their time: You check your smart phone and respond to messages during the interview

These may seem like silly things, but all of these are examples of feedback I have heard from candidates. If you continue to do what you have always done, you will continue to get what you have been getting. We are at war, a war for talent. The number of contacts it takes to engage a candidate to come and meet with you has gone up exponentially in the past several years so that speaks to the point: Interviewing is essentially like dating…are you treating this person with kid gloves like you are handling a Faberge Egg or are you treating them like a soccer ball and kicking them through the process?

 

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