How to Attract the Talent You Want

  • Treat every candidate with respect for their interest. Whether you are recruiting inexperienced new graduates or C-level executives, give every candidate the respect they deserve as people. Being honest, open and professional is critical to candidates’ perceptions of your company. Never violate this rule in your talent-finding formula.
  • Create a professional hiring process; then follow it. Explain the hiring process to all candidates; follow it religiously. Depending on the authority level of different jobs, you’ll need to vary your process at times. However, to maintain your professional credibility, you must follow the process you have explained to the candidate.
  • Design a positive process for candidates that don’t “make the cut.”  Have you experienced the horrors or heard about other candidates who were told that they would hear from a company after an interview, only to hear nothing? Employers who practice this “policy” must not realize the damage they do to their reputation and brand. Candidates have friends and family who are also consumers and can refer other talented people. Outstanding leaders develop a formula that offers dignified ways to deliver a professional “no” message.
  • Create a hiring formula that gives you flexibility.  Your recruiting and hiring formula should recognize that you may sometimes need candidates with unusual educational or behavioral qualifications specific for the job, department or team. A winning talent-finding formula allows you to be consistent, but flexible when necessary. If you want to consistently attract the best talent, make flexibility your trusted partner.
  • Create a pleasant “candidate experience” for all job seekers and recruits.  You might compare this component to the popular branding goal of creating a positive “customer experience” for all consumers who contact your company. Treating all candidates with respect, keeping your hiring process consistent, and having a professional communication strategy for non-hires increases your probabilities of attracting and hiring the best talent available.

Consider using some or all of these suggestions to create your effective plan and winning recruiting programs. If  these features sound like basic human courtesy and respect more than textbook HR principles, you’re right.

Whether you are recruiting for a part-time mail clerk or a Vice President of IT, the candidate will judge your leadership ability—and your company—by the way you manage the hiring process. Your company faces no more risk when hiring a lower-level employee than when interviewing executive suite candidates. Your professional hiring process should be consistent for all candidates.

For example, the inexperienced part-time candidate may have an older sibling or family member who is eminently qualified for an open executive position. Further, lower level candidates may not be shy about telling everyone in sight about the treatment they received when interviewed by you or your company. If it was a positive experience, he or she may sing your praises. Conversely, if it was a negative experience, the candidate may be equally vocal in recommending that family and friends not buy your company’s products or services.

Join the fraternity of outstanding leaders by designing a professional, effective talent-finding formula. Your career and employer will reward you many times over.

What You Should Do Before Your Staff Members Go On Vacation

When a member of your team goes away for a few days, who will handle that person’s job duties? It is important to identify which pieces of their jobs need to be covered when your staff members take leave for any reason. Choose other employees on your team who can best cover certain parts of their coworkers’ jobs and have them train on those early on. Always have a back-up person for the pertinent processes in your office in case someone needs to take some time away.

Another important question to ask is whether or not your team member can complete parts of his or her job before leaving the office for a vacation. If there is a project you know will come up while that person is away, ask them to put in a little extra time and hard work before going away. This will ensure important reports, projects, or any other time-sensitive parts of their jobs will be performed before employees take time off. It will also likely make their first days back in the office a little easier because they’re not playing as much catch-up.

Finally, how can you mitigate the amount of vacation time an employee will need to spend being plugged in? With important projects out of the way beforehand and other employees available to fill in for vacationing team members, it all seems done, right? Not quite. It’s important to also consider questions from other colleagues and outside entities directed toward your vacationing staff member. Always make sure your employees set their out-of-office emails and voicemails to direct inquiring parties to the next available person.

While these steps for preparing for your staff member vacations seem like no-brainers, it takes careful strategy from you as a manager, as well as well-defined expectations from your team. Talk with them individually about their commitments and other skills to find out what they can help with while their coworkers take time away. Explain that their extra dedication will ensure more relaxation when they also take vacations from work. Have them document their job duties and general tips for coworkers who may fill in for them.

With a well-designed leave preparation plan, your employees can take much-needed vacation time while still providing the support you need for your team. They will also be willing to put in the extra time and effort leading up to their days off when they understand that this will allow them more freedom to turn off their phones and spend quality relaxing time away from the office.

Five Traits of A Great Leader

Here are five things you can do to succeed as a great leader:
  1. Instead of commanding, coach your team and organization toward success.
  2. Don’t manage people, empower them. The know-how, experience, and solutions are often out there; it’s a matter of helping people discover them.
  3. Cultivate respect by giving it, instead of demanding it.
  4. Know how to manage both success and failure.
  5. Show graciousness in your management, rather than greediness. Be humble about your successes, and whenever possible, give someone else the opportunity to shine.