Take it easy on job seekers

Changing jobs is a highly stressful experience for us humans. Even positive changes can bring about uncertainty, but yet too many people on the hiring side of the desk treat this like a chance to tell people they aren’t good enough or don’t follow directions. I personally think we need to offer a lot more grace in this process and take a few minutes to listen to a candidate. Learn about their skills and why they are interested in joining your company.

Here’s the reality, job seekers get bad job advice from all kinds of people. Employed people think the fact that they have a job makes them qualified to give job seekers advice and that’s not necessarily a fact. People find jobs a variety of ways, and decision makers have a variety of preferences. What works for one job seeker, may not work for another, but job seekers don’t know the difference until it’s too late. They do the best they can with the information they have, yet here we are, complaining about them like they should be experts at landing their next position-especially one with the company we work for!


In 2019 I want you all to stop disqualifying candidates for things that are not skills related. If the job you are recruiting for doesn’t require uber attention to detail, then stop disqualifying applicants for misspelled words and grammar mistakes. Don’t assume that someone who left their last three jobs before they were there for a year can’t do your job. Make sure you know why a bachelors is “required” so you know what you’re really looking for.

Talk to people.

Look, in all my years of recruiting I’ve learned that your next best hire might make their way to you in one of the most unconventional ways so dial it down a notch. Get off your high horse before karma knocks you off it. When it does knock you off of it, I hope you know everything you need to know to be the perfect job seeker.

Do you hire crazy? Yes, yes we do.

So my phone has been blowing up over 2 stories that don’t really have anything to do with me. The first being some guy in Arkansas that woke up to a dog eating his testicle… I guess since I’m from Arkansas everyone feels it necessary for me to be associated with this crazy story. I haven’t been diligent in my research on this one, but you’re more than welcome to read about it here. Or google it and find where every state in the country has picked up the story. The question I have here is was it necessary to call the police? I know I should just research and find the answer, but no.

The second story Shea Allen being fired from WAAY 31 in Huntsville. Since I work in Huntsville and because I blog everyone I know feels necessary to tell me about this story and maybe make sure it doesn’t happen to me… what? Shea made it all the way to the Today show with her story of being fired for her personal blog and people are all in a tizzy sharing their two cents about it so I’ll throw my two cents in the pile. A couple of things… you are a reporter… for a news station… that makes you marketing as well. If people don’t like you or what you say they are less likely to watch you. You represent your employer at all times: when you are at the grocery store, at the gas station, at the water park, on the radio, tweeting and blogging… be mindful of that. Should she have been fired? I don’t know. Not for me to say. I don’t know what her personnel file looks like, but here’s my breakdown of her 10 confessions.

1)      If I could go bra-less anywhere and no one be the wiser, I would… but I can’t. Kudos to you for having that option.

2)      It’s easy to get things out of people who have the hots for you. This rule is true for everyone

3)      Sometimes people are better at winging it than if they rehearsed something or are reading someone else’s work. No problem here.

4)      Every female in the world is working on perfecting this art, if not for television at least for group photos, right?

5)      My left side is my good side too.

6)      Old people aren’t scary and they watch the news. Listen up sister, we all have to do things at work that we don’t like to do. Openly refusing to do a portion of your job may make it hard for an employer to take you seriously, now and in the future.

7)      Rainbows aren’t for everyone. And they usually don’t get the ratings that the opposite stories get. I’ll still give you a pass here.

8)      Are you on the clock or off the clock? Is this acceptable practice? I imagine if you have to get up in the wee hours of the morning or work extremely late and you have some hours in between stories you’re chasing that this probably isn’t as taboo as it sounds on your list. More info please?

9)      Still no problem here… as a recruiter we sometimes let candidates ramble after we’ve determined they aren’t a fit for our positions. I think letting them continue to talk is the opposite of rude.

10)   Okay.. isn’t this too far? That’s a federal crime right? Why is everyone harping on the other 9 things, but ignoring that this is actually a crime… #confused.

What I’m wondering is how the HR department for the news station is handling this? Hopefully everything is documented and maybe there is some sort of conduct clause in her contract. No matter if they chose to fire her or keep her on people are going to throw their two cents in. When your employees act crazy in public you get judged. People ask questions like “How did she get through the hiring process?” …. “Did she know what was expected from her?”… “Is this a lack of leadership within your organization?”…”Does she have a history of this type of stuff?” etc. etc.

You'll know it when you see it...

It ain’t easy being pretty…

Ridiculously Photogenic Guy
Ridiculously Photogenic Guy

So by now we have all seen some tidbits from the Iowa employee who was fired because she was too irresistible and I just had to dedicate a post to it, even though I’m a little behind. [I have been super busy with some projects I will be sharing towards the end of the month and interviewing for a new job so cut me some slack and read on] The best post I’ve seen about it so far was here: http://www.timsackett.com/2013/01/04/fire-beautiful/ . I have a couple of thoughts that I want to throw out there for conversation…

-As an HR pro how would we handle this scenario? Employee A comes to you and says that Employee B’s clothes are making him uncomfortable. There is probably a dress code right? If someone else was wearing something offensive we would address that right? He expressed that he was uncomfortable and we are HR we won’t stand for a “hostile” work environment, eh? How would you handle that in your organization?

-Why are they texting each other to begin with? What kind of policy do we have in place to avoid this drama? I’ll say this affairs typically do not start as affairs, they start somewhere else, somewhere innocent… oh I don’t know… maybe they start with texting and a relationship that builds from there. (Make wiser choices married people). I know it’s not HR’s job to referee marriages this little paragraph is just one married person keeping it real with all you married people.

I think it’s a bit of misrepresentation of faith… They met with their pastor and then he decided to let her go… I’m all for “lead us not into temptation” but legally I don’t think this is fair. I won’t jump too much into this one because it isn’t the focus for me, but I just wonder how the conversation with pastor went? Maybe pastor should’ve said let’s start with not texting each other anymore.

Here’s the deal, I think this kind of stuff happens all of the time, both ways. For instance my last job moved me into a sales role. The talks leading up to moving me into a sales role were a lot like this: “You have the look for sales” “You have a face for sales”… I was young and cute and those were the qualifications I had for sales… because I had ZERO sales experience outside of girl scout cookies. These talks made me pretty uncomfortable, but I finally agreed to give it a shot. (If you’re wondering, yes I turned out to be good at sales, but I don’t think it was because of how I look). I’ve also had clients, mostly of the manufacturing sort, request unattractive females for clerical assignments-as not to distract the men from the work they had to do. So when is it okay to hire on looks? Or fire based on looks? NFL cheerleaders? Servers at a restaurant? Receptionist? Futhermore, why are we all on her side when this hit the news? What responsibility does she hold in this, if any?

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