Recruiters are alert to signals that indicate to them that a candidate may not be suitable to refer. Your recruiter is constantly putting you in front of his/her client, mentally, imagining how you will present yourself, and whether you meet the criteria for hiring established by the client.
These warning signs factor into a decision to refer or not:
▪ Negative attitudes such as victimization, resentment, grievances with employers and arrogance give pause to recruiters because they want their client to identify with and not be turned off with the people they refer.
▪ Rambling, unfocused responses cause hesitation because clients like clear and focused answers to their questions, and they don’t want you to annoy their client.
▪ Unrealistic salary demands relative to the position under consideration often prevent your referral for review to the client.
▪ Lack of flexibility to accommodate an appointment time for a client’s busy hiring schedule.
▪ Low buyer interest due to a poorly constructed resume, poor grammar and typos, and/or the inability to clearly express what you have accomplished, learned and want to achieve is a major stumbling block to referring you.
▪ Many moves from company to company that aren’t contractual ones, and/or backward moves in title and responsibility are a concern to recruiters because their clients expect evidence of stability and forward progress in a candidate’s work history.
▪ Long, unexplained periods of unemployment raise red flags because this issue raises other questions about employability, self-motivation, and work performance competence.
In no particular order, here are the qualities that create buyer interest in employers and recruiters. These skills and values identify key strengths that companies seek in the people that they hire.
▪ Communications – you communicate effectively and are able to connect with others through listening, and creating relationships founded on trust.
▪ Honesty – you are sincere, genuine and straightforward and this impression is confirmed with past employers and colleagues.
▪ Initiative – you did your research on the company and you come prepared with good questions.
▪ Self-confidence – you impress with genuine confidence, poise, and enthusiasm.
▪ Self-discipline – you show that you are organized and that you manage your time well.
▪ Hard worker – your track record and personal values reflect the mindset of an achiever.
▪ Team player – you show the willingness and the ability to work with other people, and be part of a cooperative effort.
▪ Self motivated – you are driven to succeed, and are prepared to put in the energy to be successful, finding satisfaction in a job well done.
▪ Goal directed – your choices—academic and work-related— paint the picture of someone who is always taking on new challenges.
▪ Organized – you’re able to manage and retain vital information, juggling multiple demands on your time.
▪ Adaptability – you’re able to adapt to new people and changing situations, adjusting to priorities and sudden shifts in direction.
▪ Reliability – you keep your commitments, and former employers speak of you as someone who can always be counted on to give your best effort.
Clarity is essential. Ensure that your recruiter knows what your expectations are. Many people assume that there’s salary flexibility with an employer based on their having the experience and skills required for the job.
Some companies have flexibility for the ideal candidate, others don’t. Some recruiters are vague about compensation levels—especially if they don’t have clear guidelines from the employer. Some employers like to avoid giving anything other than a ballpark range.
Establish the playing field:
▪ What is the mid-range and maximum salary level available?
▪ Has this range been established by the employer (not the recruiter’s guess) ?
▪ What bonus or incentives does the employer offer, and how is this paid?
▪ What criteria do you have to meet to receive incentive income?
▪ When is the first salary review date?
▪ Instead of an annual review, what flexibility exists for a six-month salary review?
▪ What percentage of the company benefits premium is paid by the employer and the employee?
Some recruiters send you in to establish their credibility with a potential employer, convincing you to explore the opportunity—even though you’re earning more than the maximum salary that they know the employer won’t exceed.
This is done for their benefit, and it’s a waste of your time and the client’s. You serve as a useful way to enhance their prestige, as they show their client that they can present quality candidates…
Communicate your expectations clearly to avoid misunderstandings.
As recruiters, we often witness the damage that occurs when office politics creates problems for individuals, departments and companies. Political activities encourage hypocrisy, secrecy, deal making, rumors, power brokers, self-interests, image-building, self-promotion, and cliques — not a recipe for effective team work. For people starting in a new position, unfamiliar with the corporate culture and wanting to blend in with the new team, it can be helpful to remember the following points:
- Concentrate on building relationships, not on taking sides
- Avoid participating in gossip
- Find common ground with others, offering assistance
- Don’t discuss personal problems
- Selectively self-disclose
- Stay professional at all times
- Create win/win solutions.
- Keep the employer’s perspective in mind
- Be pleasant, laugh and smile
- Be natural
Leaders recognize and reward achievement. The spotlight falls upon employees who take the initiative to ask for more challenging tasks, how they can best contribute to the team’s success, and what ways they can apply their talents to best effect.
“The big jobs usually go to those who prove their ability to outgrow small ones.” – Theodore Roosevelt
In recent years, many companies have become more community-minded, concerned with
preserving the environment through reducing their carbon footprint, serving higher goals
beyond the main one of profitability.
People who want to work in companies where they feel their contributions are meaningful are attracted to firms that have corporate missions focused on giving back to their community and society. Idealistic attitudes are a driving force, with the newer generation considering socially responsible employers as attractive places to work and see their careers progress.
“If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life he imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.” – Henry David Thoreau
In looking to connect with a potential employer, think about who has the power to hire you. If you work in operations for example, then the management levels of Operations include Operations Manager, Regional Manager, Operations, Director and VP, Operations. The logical hiring power is the person who has the line authority to hire you.
Direct approaches to these individuals through telephone contacts obtained via Google
and other online research helps to target the manager who best understands the value of
your experience, knowledge and skills.
It is both courteous and in your interests to send your resume to the line manager and the
company’s human resources manager. The HR department is aware of other potential
hiring opportunities within the organization.
It’s easy to react in anger to frustrations and disappointments.
Things will not always go the way you want them to in your working life. Disappointments will happen. They are part of life. The key is how you choose to react to those disappointments and frustrations. If you take everything personally, if you see the world as being against you or others as being against you, then you will feel angry a lot. If you choose to indulge in anger you’ll soon find it’s spilling out into other areas of your life and affecting the quality of your life, as well as the quality of the lives of people around you.
Over time, when you choose anger as an automatic reaction to the events of daily living, it becomes a habit like any other. Habits take hold through constant practice. To change any habit that you don’t want requires a choice to choose a different reaction. The more you choose a different reaction, the more you train yourself and develop new and more positive habits for coping with petty annoyances.
When something happens that would ordinarily upset you, make an agreement with yourself to stop for a few seconds and consider what your response will be. It’s a conscious choice to become aware of what you are thinking and how you will choose to react to the event that has drawn your attention. In practicing doing this, you decondition yourself from reacting automatically in anger, and provide a pause for consideration, then you can choose what your response will be.
Grace under pressure is one of the hallmarks of leadership.
- I want more personal recognition for the contributions I make.
- I want to work with people who identify with a shared goal or cause.
- I want the opportunity to stretch myself with new challenges.
- I want work that allows me more time with my family.
- I want to earn a higher income doing more interesting work.
- I want to work for someone that I can respect and look up to.
What does your intuition tell you about what you need to be happy?
Does the opportunity exist to express your values, principles and aspirations in your work?
One of the key indicators for feeling successful is believing that your work is meaningful. Joining with other like-minded people raises the synergy of the group.
What sort of corporate culture is a natural fit for you?
It’s important to remember this in negotiating vacation with a potential employer for jobs requiring less experience : Employers sometimes have standard paid-vacation corporate policies applicable to all employees of a certain pay level.
If you have specific vacation plans, bring this to the attention of a potential employer before you get to an offer being made. Otherwise, your assumption that an employer will agree to your request can lead to wasting your time and effort in pursuing the opportunity if their policy doesn’t accommodate your vacation schedule.
One option is to negotiate an agreement whereby you take time off before you start with the new employer. In other words, you provide two weeks notice, and join the new employer one or two weeks following your notice period.
Another option is to seek a compromise with the employer; ask about unpaid time off that you need for your confirmed travel plans. More often than not, employers are willing to provide a measure of flexibility in giving this type of unpaid leave. You then combine your paid vacation with the unpaid time off.
A third option is to suggest that you receive additional paid vacation in lieu of a higher salary increase as part of your hiring agreement.