As I’ve read the past couple months of Interview Room blog posts written by our fabulous guest bloggers, Kassie Wilner, Jenn Saldarelli, and Christine Santeusanio, I’ve thought about the value of stepping back from any hobby or process to get a different view. This type of reexamination is also helpful for candidates and hiring managers. The most common complaint we hear from candidates is frustration with the job search, and the most common feedback we hear from hiring managers is frustration with the candidate search. This week I’ll offer three common trouble areas in the search, and ways to change your perspective.
Ask yourself, What is the biggest roadblock?
When the process is overwhelming, I find it helpful to step back and think about what the biggest roadblock is. For many candidates, it’s the feeling that their applications are falling on dead ears. For many hiring managers, it’s the feeling that they’re not seeing the quality of resumes they want. Once you’ve narrowed down and prioritized your primary issue, it’s much easier to craft a plan of attack. For job seekers, that might mean following some simple tips in the search, like trying new ways to be proactive, having a strong online presence, and standing out in your current position. For hiring managers, it might mean rewriting the job description to attract different candidates.
Dealing with Over-qualification
As a candidate, one of the most frustrating things is being told you’re overqualified for a job you’d really love to have. Conversely, it can be difficult for hiring managers who feel they have to turn away great candidates who are overqualified. For candidates, I’d recommend revising your resume so that it caters to the role you’re applying for. Shape your resume without downplaying your experience! For hiring managers, I suggest imaging the candidate beyond the resume. While they may seem over-qualified on paper, keep in mind that a resume doesn’t tell us everything about a candidate. Consider screening them over the phone to get more details before deciding they’re too experienced for the role.
Time is Too Short
For both candidates and hiring managers, it’s challenging when a very important interview has to be squeezed in a thirty minute slot. Candidates are nervous about getting everything across in such a short time, and hiring managers are worried they won’t get a good read. It’s important to prioritize searches in your schedule and as a hiring manager, do everything you can to schedule an interview of comfortable length. But of course, that’s sometimes not possible, and in that case, make the most of your time by coming in with a detailed plan with questions and information you absolutely need. I recommend the same for candidates; come in with good questions. Asking great questions inspires great questions in return, which can only help you.
I hope these suggestions help you see your search in a new way! For the rest of October, The Interview Room will have a new guest blogger: one of our terrific new associates, Georgia Aarons.
Chaloner, founded in 1979 as Chaloner Associates, is a national executive search firm that focuses on recruiting mid- to senior-level communications, public relations, marketing and investor relations professionals.