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What is a job for one, is a career for another

Recruiting is Not Selling, It's Getting the Candidate to Sell You

Written By ABC Consultants

Here's how this "staying the buyer" process works.

Start by listening 4X more than you talk. Asking tough, detailed questions about the person's accomplishments is the easiest way to do this. The key to this is to ask details about the person's most significant accomplishments in relationship to the actual performance needs of the job. If you preface each question with a description of what you need accomplished and why it's important to the company, the best and most worthy candidates will naturally get excited and try to convince you they're qualified. This is called the pull-toward interviewing technique, using the actual job to get the candidate excited about what you're offering. During the interview, don't accept superficial answers. Peel the onion, and get facts and specific details about the accomplishments. Challenge the person. Top people will leave this type of interview knowing they've been assessed properly. And if the job appears to be a real career move, they'll be thinking about why they want it, not why they don't.

Make the candidate earn the job; it has more value this way. This is how you stay the buyer, by making the candidate become the seller. As a result, they'll go home and tell their family, friends, co-workers, and advisors why the job represents a great career, despite only a modest compensation bump. The key to remember here is that if a candidate can't sell himself on the merits of the job, he won't be able to convince anyone else, either. Since top candidates never make the decision to switch jobs alone, this is a critical step you must address in the recruiting process.

Create the career gap. In order for a job to represent a career move it needs to offer both stretch and growth. Stretch represents the actual difference between the person's current job and the job you're offering. It covers the scope and scale of the job in terms of team size, overall responsibility, budget, what the person can learn, and the challenges involved and their impact and importance to the company. Growth is the future. It represents what the person can become if the job is handled successfully. This relates to taking on bigger assignments with more impact, promotional and unique learning opportunities, and getting exposed to more challenging situations.

Convert jobs into careers. By combining the push and pull techniques using the most significant accomplishment question as the framework, the candidate understands clearly why the job represents a possible growth opportunity. A bunch of small gaps can often represent a big career move. For example, a slightly bigger team, more influence, bigger impact, and broader responsibility combined with a faster growing company, is often all you need to convert what seems like a lateral transfer into a significant career opportunity.

You'll never have enough money in your budget to hire every great person you want. However, if you stay the buyer and get the candidate to sell you on the career merits of your job, you'll hire every one you should.

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