HOW TO BEST DEAL WITH RUDE CANDIDATES

As any recruiter will tell you, finding candidates is not easy. That’s the reason a company retains the services of an executive recruiter to help them with this task. The best candidate to find is a passive candidate – one that is not looking for a job and is currently employed. This does not preclude us from looking at candidates who are in transition or looking for their next opportunity.

95% of individuals whom I reach out to in order to get their interest in a job I am conducting a search for are pleasant, sincere and if not interested themselves, open to referring a colleague or someone from their network. But what irks me are the 5% of individuals who are plain rude. My advice to those people – if you aren’t interested, say no & move on.  If you are rejected during the recruiting process, whether it’s by me (the recruiter representing the client company) or the company hiring manager, be gracious, thankful and move on. If you decide to be a jerk to me, the recruiter or the company – you will forever have a black mark on your name, and believe me, it’s a lot more than just having an X on your name. What’s the use in burning a bridge that may help you in the long run? Also, don’t lie – it’ll catch up with you regardless of what you think.

Act courteous and professional. You never know what may happen tomorrow or in a year.

rude candidate
rude candidate

Working with Recruiters – a Recruiter’s Feedback

I’ve been working in retained executive search since 2000, and have been in contact with over 10,000 candidates. Most people don’t understand what a recruiter’s function is – they believe that a recruiter will find a job for them, not that a recruiter is reaching out to them to find a client company a candidate. Much of my time is wasted on explaining the entire process, especially to those who keep contacting me over and over again because they aren’t getting hired for one reason or another. (Personally, if someone has contacted me more than 3 times – there’s a REASON they’re not getting hired, but that’s a story for another day!)

A retained executive search professional, such as myself is hired by a company who pays me (my firm) 33 1/3% of the first year’s base salary + bonus. Generally, this is a minimum of $60,000 per search. Retained firms get paid regardless of whether they bring in a candidate or not – good firms, such as the ones I work at always fill the search with one of our candidates.

I work for the client, not the candidate. When I present a candidate to a client and the client says no – there’s a reason for it. And nothing that candidate can say or do to me will change the client’s mind. It’s nothing personal – that’s how it is.

Recruiters such as myself will ask a candidate various questions about their background, based on what is written on their resume. I often ask a candidate something about their background that is clearly written on the resume – this does not mean that I cannot read. I want to hear the candidate describe to me what it is they did in that particular position. Many resumes today are written by professional resume writers – so there is a reason I’m asking a candidate to reiterate to me what may be written on the paper in front of me.

Another question I may ask is why a candidate left one position to go to the next. If a candidate refuses to answer this – this is a red flag. It’s much better to say – “I took time off to re-evaluate my position.” or “I took time off to travel after working for 15 years in corporate America.”, than not answer. That is.. if you want to be considered as a candidate for the position.

I also ask a candidate what their salary range is. I have found in recent months that some candidates refuse to answer this. My question for asking this question is the following: if the job is paying a lot more, or a lot less than what the candidate is making, I don’t want to spend 2-3 weeks of my time interviewing, prepping and presenting a candidate only to learn from the client company that the candidate is out of reach or too junior of a candidate.

Lastly, I enjoy networking, but refuse to accept LinkedIn invitations from people who are just collecting connections. This is one of the main reasons I ask those who invite me (whom I may not know) why they want to connect. If you don’t have a valid reason – we won’t be connected.

The Importance of Vacations and Days Off

Today’s society believes in work and little play, which is not healthy for the body or the mind. All of us get time off for vacations and person days, but how many of us really take advantage of those paid days? They are there to give us time to refresh, renew and rejuvenate, as well as relax and unwind from the daily work grind.

In the last 10 years I have made a point of relaxing when the weekend comes along. This does not mean that I will not take a call or answer work-related emails – it simply means I will not work on a Saturday or Sunday. Instead, I use these two days off per week to relax and concentrate on things that are important to me, which are not work-related. I also take vacation days and personal time off. I feel such days are necessary and prevent burn-out.

Getting Old(er) and Managing

In the last 2 weeks I’ve had my first surgery (not counting a caesarian birth of one of my daughters). I have chalked it up to my body getting older and not being able to handle those things, that my young body used to handle. I am on the mend now under the care of my partner and husband, who has proven himself over and over to be the kind of spouse I want in my old age.

I haven’t given much thought to getting older, even though my half-century birthday will happen in only a few months. We age – and that’s natural. The important thing is to keep a healthy diet, exercise regularly and staying challenged and bright in our jobs and lives.

LIFE

I generally don’t write blogs about death, but I’ve been so incredibly stressed lately and feel that getting this off my chest would help me breathe more easily.

LIFE & DEATH – Life is beautiful, happy, fun, depressing, stressful and over before we know it. We either live a long life or it’s suddenly cut short.. and it’s pre-determined for us. I believe in God, and know that each of us has a limited amount of time on this earth, so we need to live each day as if it were our last and not put off anything or wait until tomorrow.

I turn 50 at the end of this year and have suddenly starting losing girlfriends – to cancer and other incurable diseases. This really puts my mortality into question. We are all put on this earth to serve a purpose and how we live that life is up to us.

I’ve had a few health concerns lately and decided that it’s time to stop and really take a long hard look at life. I’m not a fan of exercise but realize that if I want to live a longer life, exercise must be a part of my daily routine. I’m a foodie – love to cook, bake, eat – don’t we all, but in the last month or so I’ve started to eat more consciously. I still enjoy what I eat and drink but do less of it and eat quality rather than quantity.

To borrow the lyrics from Nickelback – “If Today Were Your Last Day” – each day is a gift and not a given right. Live for today!

A New Beginning?

My life will take on a new beginning come fall.. both my daughters will be in college and our life will be very different. Our life changed quite a bit almost 2 years ago, when our older daughter went off to college. It was a new beginning for us and a new one for her. She adjusted quite quickly, as most teenagers do and has really come into her own at university. The introvert that she was has blossomed into a self-confident young woman, who is friendly and no longer shy, brave and open to trying new things. When we visit her, she is eager to show us the new places she’s discovered in the city of her university and talks for hours about new friendships, new classes and new adventures. It took us a bit longer to get accustomed to setting the dinner table for 3 instead of 4, for cooking/buying less food, and less chaos/fun in our household.

Our younger daughter is in the process of deciding on a university; she has narrowed down her long list to a choice of three and in a short 2 weeks, will have made her decision. My husband and I will be left alone in our house – at least for the school-year. I’m excited to be able to experience the one-on-one we had 20 years ago, and at the same time a bit frightened, as our lives have changed so much since the children came into our lives. Times have changed also.. there is new technology, new jobs, a new house. The adjustment will be interesting.

Life – are you living for today?

It is December 29, one day before my 49th birthday. Many of my friends have already had their big 5-0 birthday and I have one year to go till my half-century birthday.

I don’t think there is anyone out there who thinks they will live to be 100, so basically, I’ve already lived half of my life. And life… is so fragile. This past year, several of my friends were diagnosed with cancer, some with other life-threatening diseases, my parents are aging, we are all looking and getting older. Some of us try to slow down the aging process by changing our lifestyle, our eating habits, our exercise routines, the products we use on our bodies, but it is inevitable – we are all getting older. And whether we are 49 or 89, we need to ponder – are we living for today, living our lives to the fullest?

I have led a good life so far: I have a wonderful family who I am close with, 2 daughters I am very proud of, a successful husband, and a successful self-made career which I never thought I’d have. I no longer wait to use the special china on holidays or the expensive wine glasses when company is over – I live life for today.  I don’t wait until the New Year to make resolutions, or eat that piece of chocolate cake when my lbs come off – are you living life for today? Don’t delay – life is short. Do today what you have planned for tomorrow and live life to the fullest!