Recruiting is Like Dating, How to Make Pop Culture and Business Meet

I was recently sitting at my desk, going through the day as I normally would, shifting through the endless sea of resumes that covers my desk, interviewing, responding to emails, and the quintessential duties of a devoted recruiter as I suddenly had a crazy idea. Why not compare recruiting to dating? I mean there are some serious similarities when you really look at the breakdown of human capital management, our fancy politically correct term for how to find the right talent for your company. Why not? I once read an article by a seasoned recruiter who likened recruiting as being a NAKED art form. So yes, the wheels started turning, and all of the sudden I had this great, comical idea of how to compare recruiting to dating.

Recruiting is like dating in so many ways. Whether you are online or in person, the whole idea is to make a great first impression, so you can prove that you are the right person for the job. As relational people, well most of us, we are all looking for something in others. It doesn’t really matter whether you are selling a product, ideology, a political view or yourself, we are all selling something. For me that happens to be a company culture, an opportunity that you can take as far or not so much, if indeed you are the right person for the job.

When you look at online dating, it’s pretty similar to looking for a job. You go on a website and you post a profile, in my case a resume about yourself. The idea is to get the person looking at you to look a little deeper, find something that sets you apart from everyone else. If you post a profile on Yahoo Personals or Match.com you put up a picture or two, tell a little bit about yourself, and what you are ultimately looking for in another human being to find happiness. If you post a resume online you are essentially doing the same thing. You are putting up your skills, showcasing your ability to write a good blurb about yourself to get someone’s attention to generate the first contact. The only difference is that you can’t put up a picture, talk about your kids or other personal information because of discrimination laws against age, gender, disability, you get the idea.

When someone has an interest in your profile, typically a form of communication follows. Examples of this ritual are a phone call or an email to find out more information about the person on the other side of the profile. Of course there is the fluff in the profile, which is why it can take so long to find that perfect match. Aren’t all potential employers looking for a driven, task-oriented individual that is detail-oriented, with good software skills and excellent communication skills, written and verbal? Aren’t all jobseekers looking for upward mobility in a progressive organization that is fast-paced on the leading edge of technology? Well most.

In recruiting, as in dating, if the connect is a good one, there will be more conversations, maybe even an “in person” meeting, if not, then one or both parties will simply move on to the next person.

As in dating, if a true connect is made, then the next steps to continue the relationship commence. A commitment of some type, whether it’s an exclusive relationship or an employment agreement, the two are one in the same as both parties have truly committed to one another for an unspecified amount of time until such a time occurs where there is an inexcusable break in the relationship which causes it to end.

Case and point, we are simply looking for "the one".

We have to ensure to our hiring managers that this new investment is a solid relationship that will benefit both parties. After all, you wouldn’t date someone that you couldn't see a future with, would you?

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