We all know them, have seen them, snickered at them when they aren't looking. Hey, I'm sure we've all been that person.

I had to sit in a review the other day and tell a guy that basically he wasn't as good as he thought he was. I didn't enjoy being the teller, and I'm sure he didn't enjoy being the hearer. But it's part of the gig.

I sat down Saturday night and looked at the job I had ahead of myself. We are doing renovations at home (I know... long drawn out story, getting closer to the end day after day) and we'd bought some floating floorboards which I had bravely decided to lay. "It's easy" people told me.. "I laid my own, easy and it looks great". I was confident I could get it done. Here's the thing, I suck at being a handy man, two left thumbs if you will. I can carry things and hold things and dig stuff etc, but doing intricate stuff which will make a difference. Here I was about to undertake a project which will be seen/noticed every single day of our lives.

I should have seen the warning signs. People close to me had asked me "Who's helping you?" I was insulted... After all I am a man... I can use power tools for good instead of evil.. I can build stuff..can't I?

I'm not sure if this is just a guy thing, but asking for help on such things seems to take a bit of your manhood with it. But as that legend Harry Calahan says in Magnum Force.. "A man's got to know his limitations".

Luckily I survived the experience (so far) I swallowed my pride or quashed my personal ego and called my Father in Law, and he happily came over the help (Thanks Fred). We learned from each other (although truth be told I learned more from him...) and currently it is straight, looking pretty good, even if in the whole day we only achieve half of our iniital goal. I am pretty excited and proud. Will be even more so when it's finished.

Could I have done it on my own? Very very doubtful. Have I learned from the experience, so as next time (heaven forbid) I'd be able to do it.. Damn straight. Am I greatful my nearest and dearest were "brave" enough to point this lack of ability out... begrudgingly yes.... Probaly saved me thousands.

Same applies in Recruitment. Recruiters, have the strength to tell people "they're Dreaming". We need to tell people to "Focus your attention on jobs you will win and can do straight away. jobs you are going to look good for. ie if you are a sandwich artist at Subway, and your goal is to be a National Sales Manager for an IT firm, don't apply for that role yet.... work your way up to it. Plot a course and stick to it. Whilst you may think "it's worth a shot", trust me it isn't. Would you want to work for a company that would hire you as that without any experience?"

I'm not saying give up on the dream. Just set a realistic and achievable course.

Views: 476

Comment by Sandra McCartt on March 4, 2010 at 1:52pm
On point Dan. I think the speech i give the most is "Sorry your background is not a fit for this position". Followed with a no nonsense ..and here's why.

I can more than relate to your remodel analogy. There was a time a few years ago that i decided there was no reason in the world that i could not lay flagstone in my entry hall and kitchen all by myself. Aside from the fact that i ended up in traction from heaving flagstones out of the back of the car five different times I now know why stonemasons are paid what they are paid.

It looks great. unfortunately all the gurus at Home Depot failed to tell me that it is necessary to power sand those flagstones after you lay the jigsaw puzzle of big stones. Not doable after one puts five layers of sealer on them. So my friends and family refer to the flagstone caper as Sandra's ability to build "toe stoppers". It took a lot of oriental rugs and several layers of rug pads to prevent serious injury to those walking through the flagstone areas. And the doors had to be taken off to have two inches cut off the bottom so the front door would open over the "toe stoppers".

I wish i had asked someone and i sure wish someone had been brave enough to tell me i didn't know what i was doing.


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