The executive team meets – an agreement is reached. The job description is written, then passed on and edited, and revised, and reviewed, and edited to include the typical “works well with others” sections – and TADA. You have your typical job description.
I often liken job descriptions to personal ads just as I have likened recruiting to matchmaking. My consultants usually chuckle when I give them the following analogy:
“Job descriptions are like personal adds. If you’re looking for a wife or husband or soul mate, you put EVERYTHING down that would make someone perfect for you. For the ladies – tall, dark, handsome, successful, a great cook, loves kids, athletic, protective, great sense of humor, loves the theater and opera. However, when push comes to shove, we’ll relinquish a few once we meet our next-to-perfect. Maybe he’s shorter than we had hoped or not a world renowned chef and maybe.. just maybe.. he’s balding. It’s the same with companies and job descriptions – they will often relinquish a few must haves to get their next-to-perfect. Because lets face it – it’s very few and far between that Goldilocks strikes our lives and gives us that – just right.”
They giggle, and think back to a personal ad they’ve read or potentially written. And the lightbulb goes off – maybe I have a shot.
Putting this down makes me wonder – how often are we discounting candidates because they’re not “just right” instead helping them understand they could be “next-to-perfect?” Are we working with our candidates to help them sell themselves or simply doing those key word searches hoping with our fingers crossed to find our elusive Goldilocks?