Why Networking Matters for Your Career (Part II)

networking

In part one of our post on networking, we talked a little bit about the big impact networking can make on your career.

As we mentioned, networking has a lot of big perks, from bringing opportunities to you and helping you make opportunities of your own, to helping you gain knowledge and a broader perspective that will help shape who you are, professionally and otherwise.

But knowing the “why” doesn’t mean you’re guaranteed to know how to network successfully, which is why we are going to help you by breaking it all down.

Here are some of our tips for good networking:

  • Think small. It’s not always knowing a lot of people that will necessarily help you when networking. Rather, focus on knowing the right people who will help go in the direction you’d like. Doing so will not only help you maintain your goal, but also ensure that you maintain the friendships that matter to you the most, which definitely isn’t the case when you have so many people you can hardly keep up with them all.
  • Keep in touch. That brings us to our next point: try your best to keep in touch. Nothing is worse than having to ask someone you barely talk with to help with a big favor. We’re not saying you need to be in touch with the person everyday, but the more often you get together, the better. Plus, if it is someone you really have a lot in common with who is willing to go that extra mile for you, then we think networking and maintaining that friendship is a definite win-win.
  • Return the favor. If someone is willing to put in the time and effort to help you out, then they shouldn’t expect any less from you. Always try your best to return the favor. Whether it is something small like a reference or some big opportunity, simply offering that kind of the gesture is the best way to let them know that you are really grateful for all that they do for you.
  • Be authentic. And finally, you need to be authentic throughout this whole process. Never look at someone as simply a bridge to a new job. Not only is it wrong, but if they ever found out, it could potentially ruin a great friendship and perhaps others that you’ve created. Remember, you are dealing with another person, and you certainly wouldn’t want to feel used either, so do your best to refrain from falling into that kind of trap.

Have anything to add to our list? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter!

photo credit: Official GDC via photopin cc

Employers: Paying Attention to Your Candidates in the Waiting Room (Part II)

office folks getting a tour

In our last post, we gave you a primer on making your candidates wait in the waiting room and what it means for your candidate experience.

As we mentioned, the candidate experience is a vital part of your company’s success. From defining your employer brand and your company culture to affecting the efficiency of your recruiting efforts, all of these things are impacted by a candidate’s experience in some shape or form.

For the most part, employers know the major target areas when it comes making a great candidate experience, but where we see them falter the most is when it comes to the waiting room.

On Tuesday, we gave you three reasons why you should pay attention to your candidates in the waiting room. Today, we are going to give you a few ways on how to do so. Take a look below:

  • Welcome them. Change how you think of the waiting room. Instead, think of it as a welcome center where you still have an opportunity to wow your candidates. Everyone in the office should make an effort to approach the candidates if they happen to walking by the area. Instilling this kind of behavior is a great way to expand your company culture as well allow your employees to get a feel for what could be a new teammate, making it much easier for this future employee to acclimate themselves with the company.
  • Take care of them. Do more than just offer them a seat. When someone has to wait for an extended period of time, it is common courtesy to at least offer them something to drink. If you want, you could also give them a quick brochure or handout that can help them get more acquainted with the company (if they don’t know already)–though we prefer that there is someone there who can actually converse with them.
  • Give them a tour. If you anticipate a long waiting period, consider giving them a tour of the office. Sure, most companies don’t have the resources to hire a full-time tour guide, but with plenty of notice, you can ask each employee to put in their time and give at least a quick 15 minute walk through the office. This not only buys you time with your other candidates, but also helps those on the tour get a feel for the office and the culture.

Have any tips that you’d like to add? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter!

photo credit: Silly Jilly via photopin cc

3 Tips On Giving More Incentives to Your Recruiters 

Best of Events 2011

In yesterday’s post, we gave you three reasons on why you should consider giving more incentives to recruiters. But doing so requires more than just slapping on a few new incentives each quarter.

A well-executed incentive program takes a good bit of planning. To get you started down that path, here are three tips on how to successfully give more incentives to your recruiters. Take a look below:

  • More than just money. These days, money isn’t everything–especially for the Millennials–which is why it is important to make sure your incentives amount to more than just cash. Consider mixing those bonuses with tickets to a special event, a company sponsored vacation, paid lunch, or even just some company-wide recognition. This can ensure that you are appealing to your employees in a way that reaches beyond simple monetary value. 
  • Quality over quantity. Gauge incentives with quality over quantity. Nothing is worse than putting out goals for your recruiters and getting less than desirable results. Avoid this by making sure you outline exactly what you are aiming for when you want your recruiters to attract candidates. Not only will this prevent an unwanted amount of candidates that will end up wasting your time, but it will also give your recruiters a more concrete idea of what kind of candidate they should be aiming for.
  • Be consistent, and follow through with incentives. Another thing to consider when it comes to incentives is that you need to be consistent when handing them out. That means that everyone who reaches the goal should receive the same incentive, or one equal in value. You also need to make sure that you follow through on all of your incentives—so don’t make any promises you know you can’t keep.

All in all, you need to make sure you are doing what you can to make your recruiters happy. And with these tips, you should be able to be put things on the right track.

Recruiters play a huge role in successful hires, and accordingly, the success of your company, so don’t skimp out on treating them right.

photo credit: eveos via photopin cc

Employers: Hiring Employees Who Care (Part II)

looking up at skyscrapers

Yesterday, we gave you several reasons why you should hire employees who really care about their job.

As we mentioned, hiring passionate employees can bring a lot of benefits to a company. From the strive for excellence and progress, to an employee’s personal investment in the company, all of these things can help enhance the overall success of your company.

But finding passionate employees isn’t always that easy. As a hiring manager, it can require a little detective work to sift through all of the candidates, especially when everyone can simply say, “Yes, I am passionate.”

To lead you in the right direction, here are a few tips that can help you pick out the right (read: passionate) candidates for the job. Take look below:

Assess cultural fit

Cultural fit may determine exactly whether an individual is passionate or not, but it will help make things easier for you. By comparing the values of your candidates to employees who you already know are passionate, you can get a better idea of where they stand in terms of commitment. If you happen to see the same drive and characteristics in them as you do in your employees, then it is safe to say that you are at least heading in the right direction.

An extraordinary interview

The interview is usually the first serious one-on-one conversation where you will be able to gauge their passion. With that in mind, here are a few things to look for.

  • They ask a lot of questions and aren’t afraid to share their opinions. A lot of interviews typically consist of the hiring manager asking all of the questions and the candidate answering back with planned answers, but that’s not the case when it comes to a candidate who is passionate about the job.

    Look for people who aren’t afraid to share their opinions, whether it has to do with their personal assessment of the industry, how they believe they can enhance your company, and more. An interview with them should feel like you are being interviewed by the candidate as well.

  • They make a great sell. Above all, a candidate who is passionate about the position is also more likely to try to sell themselves (i.e. their qualities and characteristics) compared to the average candidate. This is a good sign because it shows that they are persistent and truly believe they are the right candidate for the job. That kind of drive is a great quality to have in any employee.

What do you think about hiring passionate employees? Is it important to your company? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter!

photo credit: swisscan via photopin cc

Employers: Hiring Employees Who Care (Part I)

notes

When it comes to employees, one of the major sayings that gets tossed around is “quality over quantity.”

But there’s more to that saying than simply hiring employees who have the skills, experience, and characteristics for success: they need to have passion, too.

Over the next few days, we’re going to talk about hiring employees who are passionate about their job. For today, we’ll talk about three reasons why you should hire employees who will really care about their job. Take a look below:

  • When your company succeeds, they succeed (and vice versa). One of the most important things about hiring employees with passion for their job is the excitement they gain from seeing that your company does well. Simply put, these employees have a lot to gain when your company does well because they’re personally invested in your company. In turn, a lot of their success depends on yours and vice versa, making it a highly reciprocal relationship. This helps to ensure that both parties are doing their best to reap the benefits of this teamwork.
  • They look for progress. Employees who are truly passionate about their jobs and want the company to succeed do more than just meeting the end-of-the-year goals—they’re also trying to go above and beyond and look towards the future. This drive and push for progress can do wonders for your company, as it helps you to think outside of the box, giving you a better chance to stand out amongst the competition.
  • They strive for excellence. A passionate employee’s strive for excellence is one of the driving forces behind their work ethic, which is a great thing for you because you see all of the great benefits from it. Passionate employees go above and beyond in every aspect, from their push to help others succeed, to the extra details they add to their work, and even to pushing themselves to learn and adapt beyond their boundaries. This kind of work ethic can do wonders for your company culture and success, making these types of employees a valuable asset.

Check back tomorrow when we go over a few ways you can scope out these passionate employees during the hiring process. In the meantime, let us know your thoughts by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter!

photo credit: NathanaelB via photopin cc

Employers vs. Candidates: Who Is Interviewing Who? (Part II)

interviewers

 

Yesterday, we talked about why it is important for employers to not take the hiring process—and the candidates—for granted.

Despite the common belief that candidates must bend over backwards to get the job they want, they actually have more power than employers think. In reality, they also have a pretty good amount of influence over a company’s success.

In our previous post, we gave you a handful of reasons why you as an employer should feel like you are being interviewed by candidate. To round things off, we are going to give you a few tips on how to go about doing that, hopefully leading to a more fruitful and fair interviewing process. Take a look below:

  • Come prepared. When a candidate comes in for an interview, we always expect them to come fully prepared to answer or tackle whatever it is that we throw at them. The same should go for the hiring manager as well.

    Don’t go into an interview thinking you can get away without reading the resume, or worse, knowing exactly what the position entails. You are a representative of your company, and when you look unprofessional, it reflects poorly on your company, which may affect your candidate’s final decision.

  • Nail your values and goals. This one follows pretty close to our first tip but deserves a category of its own. Simply put, this means figuring out exactly what is important to your company. Candidates these days, especially Millennials, are very keen on authenticity; if the values of the company they want to work for don’t relate to what they believe in, they’re likely to either leave the job quickly or struggle to find a sense of purpose.

    Avoid this problem by being up front with them. It’s better to have things not work out in the hiring process than it is to have an employee discover your values later on and cost your company time and money.

  • Don’t waste their time. This one is a pretty common problem that most employers run into. Be quick as possible when it comes to letting them know of anything new, whether that means a brief update about when they’ll likely heat from you next, or if another candidate has already been selected for the job.

    Your candidates have lives as well, so it should go without saying that their time can be better spent elsewhere than patiently waiting by the phone for any updates on the job. Employer branding is important, and courtesy is an essential part of keeping a positive employer brand.

The hiring process is a two-way street, so don’t take your candidates for granted. By being as courteous to them as they are to you, you’ll not only make your candidates happier—you’ll also have a better chance of retaining the top talent you need to be a successful company.

photo credit: North Carolina National Guard via photopin cc

Employers vs. Candidates: Who Is Interviewing Who? (Part I)

skyscraper

For candidates, the interview process can be pretty nerve-racking. They have to prepare themselves for what they’re going to say, whether they’re too dressed up or underdressed, whether their qualifications and characteristics meet the requirements of the job, and more.

And, on top of all that, there’s the possibility that they’ll go through multiple interviews and still not get the job. All in all, being a job seeker can be a pretty tough position to be in.

But believe it or not, candidates shouldn’t be the only ones worried about the interview process. As a company, you are not only in the business of selling goods and services to customers or clients. You’re also in the business of selling your brand and company to the workforce, because without employees, the range of your success would be limited, to say the least.

As such, it is important to not take the hiring process for granted. Here are a few reasons why you, as an employer, should feel like you are being interviewed too. Take a look below:

  • Candidates have options. As much as you’d like to think you are the only company in the world, that isn’t the case. Just like you, candidates have plenty of options when it comes to picking and choosing where they want to work, and chances are, they are weighing the pros and cons of each one. Don’t shoot yourself in the foot by making the wrong first impression; when you do, you give your competitors a better opportunity to snatch up your top talent.
  • The candidate experience is essential. Above all, you always need to be thinking about the candidate experience. While some candidates might put up with all of the waiting or lack of acknowledgement from the hiring manager and recruiter, the ones who don’t have the potential to have a large impact when they speak up to their friends. In turn, a few bad candidate experiences can compromise your employer brand and end up narrowing your talent pool—a less than desirable position to be in.

Check back tomorrow when we continue our discussion on employers being interviewed by candidates. In the meantime, what do you think? Do employers need to treat candidates like an interviewer? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter!

photo credit: Thomas Hawk via photopin cc

3 Tips on How to Prepare Millennials for the Workplace

walking in the forest with a mentor

Lately, we’ve had Millennials on our mind.

It only makes sense. Millennials are now entering the workforce at an increasing rate, meaning that employers need to take the initiative to ensure that they’re prepared to handle this generation with all of their values, wants/needs, and disadvantages/advantages.

Yesterday, we talked about the concern that Millennials aren’t quite as prepared to enter the workforce as they’d like to believe. This, of course, is a real concern that employers should take seriously.

To help you tackle the problem head on, yesterday, we promised to outline a few tips on how to make your Millennial hires a success. Without further adieu, here are three tips on how to prepare Millennials for the workplace. Take a look below:

  • Manage their expectations. From the start, Millennials have been told by their parents that they can pretty much do whatever they put their minds to. As such, they’ve become pretty big dreamers and have notoriously fallen prey to the “sense of entitlement” stereotype.

    Fortunately, employers can easily handle this problem by managing their Millennial employees’ expectations. The key is to be up-front, and make sure they know exactly what they’re getting themselves into before they commit to the job. Outlining what you expect out of them and what they’ll gain from their experience at your company will help to prevent any dissatisfaction they could other have from having too high of expectations from their job. 

  • Rethink your core requirements. You’re now dealing with an entirely different generation. As such, it’s important that you rethink your core requirements in order to better match the values and skills of this generation. One of the biggest roadblocks that the Millennial generation runs into is their lack of experience in the professional field. Where they lack that quality, they make up for it in their drive, creativity, and desire to commit themselves to a company they truly believe in, so take that into consideration as you look at their credentials.
  • Be devoted to their training and mentoring. As we said, Millennials lack the job experience of the older counterparts, but make up for it in a variety of other qualities and characteristics. One desire that you can tap into is their desire to be mentored. Take advantages of this and shape this generation into the successful professionals you want them to be–in the end, you’ll be glad you did. 

What do you think about Millennials entering the workforce? Do we need to help prepare them for the workplace or should they already come prepared? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter. We’d love to hear from you!

photo credit: vastateparksstaff via photopin cc

3 Tips on How to Attract Millennials

chicago bean

Graduation month has come, and that means there will be plenty of Millennials getting ready to enter the workforce once they’ve received their diplomas.

For employers, now is a great time to take advantage of the flood of top talent that will be out there in the job market.

However, it is not as easy as it sounds. Millennials can be a tough crowd to please, sometimes making it extremely frustrating for the older generations who typically have the job of hiring them.

As difficult as they may seem at first glance, Millennials are extremely hard-working and will become the future leaders of most companies. As such, it is important that you do your best to attract them as effectively and efficiently as possible.

To show you how to do that, we thought we would give you three tips on how to attract Millennials and find the top talent you need. Take a look below:

  • Be flexible. Millenials place a high value on work-life balance. As such, it is important that you do your best to make sure your company offers some flexibility on the schedule. This can either be done through a work from home program, or through some kind of vacation benefits, a few extended lunch breaks, or even allowing them to choose how and when they get their work done. Just make sure you do this all within reason in order to make sure you maximize the work.
  • Be tech-savvy. It is the age of technology and Millennials are at the forefront when it comes to all of the new programs, electronics, and apps floating around. If you want to catch the eye of this new generation, try your best to be up to date on all of the various things coming out in the tech world. There are plenty of ways to do this. The easiest way is to make sure you are up to date on all of your social media sites. Another thing to consider is allowing people to bring their own devices to work. Whether it is a laptop or mobile phone, giving them the freedom to at least use them for work can help attract the Millennial crowd.
  • Be authentic. Millennials crave authenticity. As such, it’s important to make sure that your company has something truly genuine to offer to this group. Figuring out your core values and how the Millennial generation can benefit from them in their personal and professional life is an extremely important part of getting them interested in what you have to offer, so make sure you figure out what is that makes you so great.

Have anything to add to our list? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter!

photo credit: DarrellR via photopin cc

Candidates: What to Do When you Don’t Get the Job

lights

Over the past few days, we’ve gone over what employers should do when a candidate doesn’t get the job, from why it is important, to how employers can put forth the effort efficiently and authentically.

As we mentioned, taking care of candidates is an extremely important part of employer branding, even for those candidates who didn’t quite make the cut in the hiring process.

Doing all of this, though, isn’t just reserved for the employers. In fact, there is a lot that candidates can benefit from properly ending the hiring process when they haven’t been accepted.

Candidates, here are just a few ways to get the most out of your experience, even if you weren’t hired. Take a look below:

  • Thank the employer. You are most likely upset that you didn’t get the position, but the last thing you want to do is to let on that you are bitter towards the employer. Stay positive and approach the matter as professionally as possible. Whether it is a friendly phone call or a nice formal letter, thanking whoever helped you through the hiring process is a great gesture of professionalism.
  • Maintain contact and keep your options open. There is always a chance that a position may open up in the future, and just because you have to move on and find another company, doesn’t mean you should keep your options limited. Though it sounds strange, take the opportunity to do some networking and maintain contact with the hiring manger or recruiter. That way, you’ll have a better idea of when a position opens up, especially if it is for a company you really want to work for.
  • Ask them why. You can also take this as a learning experience by asking the employer why you weren’t qualified for the job. Not only will this help you in your future job searches, but it also shows the employer that you are a driven individual, which can make a great impression on them and possibly give you an advantage the next time you go out for a position in the company.

Candidates, don’t snub these employers! While it can certainly be hard to care–especially after being turned down for the position–you need to make the most out of it.

Consider these situations as another aspect of your professional career. They can be important stepping stones in your career and great learning experiences, so don’t take them for granted.

photo credit: Jason A. Samfield via photopin cc