This may sound like ‘preaching to the choir’ but…the smaller your company and its staff, or the bigger and more critical the job, or a combination of those things, the greater the need for a disciplined and thoughtful process leading to the ultimate decision. The interviewing process and reference checking, and hiring processes are critical to the desired outcome.
Candidates sometimes have difficulty accepting that a hiring decision favoring someone other than them could have been a good thing for them. It frankly takes a very mature, self-assured candidate to be able to conclude this, even a week or two after the event. For some, the moment of understanding is hard to grasp even months later.
There are at least several things we can learn from experiences like this.
First, this is what we do for our client employers. It is all we do, and it stands to reason that we do it well since we’ve been here for a long time and thrived in our chosen field.
Second, we can take the worst part of the process out of your hands and we are accustomed to breaking the news, good or not-so-good, to candidates. That also is what we do and we are good at that too.
Third, if you’re looking at a couple of new hires, and they appear to be equal depending upon the skills and experience required we may be able to help you ‘preview’ each candidate on a temp-to-hire basis. That is dependent on the candidates since they will need to be made aware of this and agree to it. That can prove to be tricky. This approach will typically not be employed when the desired skill and experience set is tough enough to locate once, let-alone twice in a reasonable span of time.
As difficult as it is sometimes to understand that a decision which goes against one as a candidate was a good decision for both him or her and the prospective employer, that usually is the result even though sometimes it can take quite a while to heal and see that situation for what it was…a blessing in disguise. If you’ve had a personal experience with this, you understand.
Frankly, it is sometimes better if a person has had such an experience. Then he or she is better able to ascertain if this is a good position for them or if they’d be wise to pass even if it were to be offered.
The old phrase “any port in a storm” is simply not appropriate for a candidate in the interviewing and hiring situation other than in the temporary category where there is both a beginning and an end in the picture from the beginning. If the individual has not had the experience of a wrong choice that didn’t pan out, there can too often be the need for that to be proved later in life than earlier. This is part of the maturity we seek in candidates; we find this to be very important to our success and to the success of our client companies.
Fred D’Amato – Vice President