Here’s a newsflash for you – recruiting is a people business. And whenever people are involved, inevitably, something will go wrong. I think most of us are willing to admit this, and frankly I’m happy to have a place like RBC where I can bitch, gripe, complain then call it blogging. A couple of my recent favorite posts (here and here) have been pretty good rants. These posts make me feel normal. And less alone.

When you are in the middle of a crappy situation (unreasonable hiring manager, disappearing candidate, irritable boss) it’s so easy to throw up your hands and wonder if ANYONE ANYWHERE has ever had to deal with this crap!??!?

Yes. Yes we have. There is nothing new under the sun and that goes for recruiting too. I promise you that no matter how difficult your situation is, you are very unlikely to run into something that hasn’t already happened to someone else. The players change. The game stays the same. It’s important for you to know this.

Because well intentioned commenters will make you second guess yourself.

I’m always amazed at the (very rare) comments from readers who act SHOCKED that a candidate did something exceptionally stupid. They almost seem to be insinuating that if only you had controlled the situation better, this wouldn’t have happened. Or that client who dropped off the face of the earth after a couple of submittals? REAL recruiters only work with clients who have them on speed dial and exchange gifts at Christmas, or something.

Maybe there is a parallel universe where that kind of recruiting exists. I’ve personally never been there. That is not to say we shouldn’t be selective. We absolutely should try to only work with clients that respect our part in the process. We certainly should be asking closing questions and “bear-hugging” our candidates. We will still have bad days. It’s ok to talk about them, certainly here at RBC, where the audience should get it.

If that wasn’t reason enough, there’s always this – today is National Have a Bad Day Day. Who saw that coming?

Views: 1425

Comment by Amber on November 19, 2012 at 5:48pm

You're so right, sometimes you need to "scream" to make it through the day! We have suddenly gotten incredibly busy - what?! I am having people visit for Thanksgiving, still cleaning, planning, shopiing and soon cooking. What is the deal with all this work, at all the same time?? Haha, I am so glad we have the work - but I just saw a post recently about this being the "slow" time of year. But this is my 3rd year of recruiting, and so far we trend with this being our busiest time. So, I will manage it. And even though the lower oven of my extremely old double wall oven is kaput (no repair, no replacement part available any longer), I will have a fabulous food prepared for my guests and enjoy the holiday.

Comment by Amy Ala Miller on November 19, 2012 at 6:00pm

Thanks Amber! Slow time of year huh....? well someone did NOT tell that to my hiring managers! :) Gotta get these roles filled by end of the year... don't want to lose headcount in next year's budget dontcha know!

Comment by Amber on November 19, 2012 at 6:10pm

Not trying to stick up for the hiring managers, but back in the day I made some pretty poor hires just so I wouldn't lose my FTE count for the coming year. Not willingly, but that was what we had to do. But that's how the game was played, even if no one won! Good luck with filling them, hopefully the HM's know how lucky they are to have a good internal to work with. (I don't want to catch too much flack, but many internal recruiters or HR people are more of a hinderance then a help!)

Comment by Sandra McCartt on November 19, 2012 at 6:48pm

Let me give you fair warning Amo.  Do not say , "What else could happen?"  Just roll around in the bad day or week or month.  All i know for sure about recruiting is nothing stays the same.  It is either going to get better or it is going to get worse.  I have decided to make sure that nothing else nuts happens between now and Thanksgiving.  How am i so sure.  I am not going to do a damn thing that has anything to do with recruiting until a week from today.  I have enjoyed all the forklift drivers who think they are industrial engineers.  I am through with all the customer service clerks who think they are tax managers.  I have had all the fun i can stand with job orders cancelled after three top candidates have been recruited and interviewed.  I have been verbally chastised by a deaf person who was madder than a hornet that i refused to submit them on a business development position albeit my verbal chastising lost something because it had to be signed to another person then the other person had to chew my butt.  We got past it and parted well..i think.

I am spending turkey day and the days thereafter with my horses.  They don't talk, they don't want a job.  If they are having a bad day i can kick their butts out in the pasture.  I don't have to smile and i am not going to answer the phone.  If everything i touch turns to horse pucky and everybody acts like horse's butts i may as well be where it's expected because they are horses. 

Comment by Amy Ala Miller on November 19, 2012 at 7:02pm

Amber, thank you. I remind them frequently lol.

Sandra, so true... I just can't stand when some pollyanna do-rite sets the comment section on fire with tales of how "in control" they are of every single facet of their recruiting and if any of us have a bad day it's got to be self-inflicted. Sometimes, as I'm sure is true in your field w/ the horses, shit just happens. As you said it'll get better, or it'll get worse. Sometimes both, multiple times in the same day. :)

Comment by Kelly Blokdijk on November 20, 2012 at 12:53am

As far as I'm concerned the whole point of blogging is for bitching, griping and complaining. Oh, and occasionally, sharing something useful.

You want a pep-rally or motivational speech? Find a cheerleader, a therapist or read the Secret and listen to Tony Robbins. Otherwise, the rest of us that deal w/ real-world BS day in and day out would like to open up the steam vents and let loose once in a while about the crap-fest we put up with working for a living.

If you live if the world of perfection. Be happy about that and give the rest the benefit of the doubt that when things turn to $#!+, it wasn't because we you did something right and they did something wrong. 

Comment by Christopher de Mers on November 20, 2012 at 7:08am

You know what Amy? I'd rather deal with real any day of the week...

Are there goofy hiring managers? Hey; take my career - they seem to have been attracted to me! Nutty candidates? Yeah; when I offer you the job you're supposed to say 'yes" - "I'm not sure" take place way earlier in the process! Silly processes that waste time? We excel in uncovering (and hopefully removing!) them.  So I've seen a lot (I'd say I've seen it all but that just tempts the universe to really knock me, and I've got a holiday coming up...)

So rant away, bitch, let your hair down and have a cuppa whatever.  And then get the next candidate.  That's what we do.  And we get it.

PS: Keep writing!

Comment by Dr Linda Pakshong on November 20, 2012 at 7:33am


Enjoyed reading the above posts in this time of insanity! And they cheered me up - Thanks!

Comment by Deepa on November 20, 2012 at 4:51pm

Amy, I am 100% with you. Loved this: "They almost seem to be insinuating that if only you had controlled the situation better, this wouldn’t have happened".

To extrapolate that a little bit I hate the advice, "Be careful what you wish for". For one, it is impossible to follow that advice, by the time you start being careful you have already wished for what it is that supposedly you shouldn't have wished for. Plus, it suggests that it is your fault if something you wished for didn't turn out quite the way you thought it would :)

Thank you for the reassuring post.

Comment by Amy Ala Miller on November 20, 2012 at 5:00pm

Thanks for the support guys! I figured a lot of us were feeling this way... :)


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