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May 14, 2014

Dear Barb:

How can I establish candidate control faster? My candidates are not providing me with information; they are not calling me back after interviews, and seem to change their minds on priorities without informing me. I’ve had three offers turned down in the past 30 days. I’m tired of working for nothing. It’s almost like this younger generation has no respect for what I can do for them, and think they know more than me.

Sylvia M., Atlanta, GA

Dear Sylvia:

First of all, I don’t believe you can establish candidate control. What was your reaction the last time someone tried to control you? For those of you who are parents, what happens when you try to control your children?

In our profession, it’s time to realize this is a relationship building business. Your focus should be to establish rapport based on trust. If your candidates are not keeping you informed, they don’t understand the benefit to them. Candidates want the following three questions answered:

  1. Can I trust you?
  2. Do you care about me?
  3. Are you committed to do what you’re promising?

Your initial interview is like a first date. You will only get information that a candidate can provide a total stranger they don’t know or trust. That is why it is so important to re-interview candidates throughout your process. When they see you are working with them and they can trust you, they will provide more thorough answers.

Your prep and debrief provides your candidate with a competitive edge. During these debriefs your candidate should understand the benefit to them to call you after their interviews. It’s time to quit blaming a younger generation and review what you can change in order to establish rapport and trust with all generations that you are representing.

To stop the offer turndowns, make sure you are conducting a general interview vs. having a job in mind when you interview your candidates. Use percentages when you interview, by determining what percentage of time your candidates does each specific tasks and also what percentages they want to do those tasks in a future opportunity. Don’t assume for one minute that a person wants a new job which mirrors their current job. If you use percentages when you write job orders this will greatly assist you in making the right match for both your candidates and clients.

Barbara J. Bruno, CPC, CTS

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