Job History & the secrets that they tell

13 Jan

I have been in the recruiting business for over twelve years and have owned this firm for almost a full ten years, the anniversary date is fast approaching. We have worked with clients from California to Maine and across the ocean in Europe. We have filled all sorts of interesting positions for our clients, some have been easy others much more challenging. But there seems to be one common job qualification that our clients have almost unanimously asked for or asked about……JOB HISTORY. They want to hire candidates with a good JOB HISTORY. I get it and I want to explain it to you.

 I am sure not everyone is going to agree with me and those who don’t will probably be those who have poor job history for either being fired(most likely numerous times), being stupid and quitting a job without another job or starting a business and not being smart enough to have it last more than a few months.  When I am trying to coach candidates and my employees on how to handle certain situations in this business I often use dating analogies because interviewing is so similar to dating. You need to make a really good first impression and leave the interviewer wanting more and excited to want to see you again. Heck after a good first date we all go and tell our buddies or girlfriends, that is what we want the interviewer to go and do. We want that person to tell their co-workers, make a special trip to see the VP or CEO and tell them how good this candidate is that we just interviewed.  However seldom if ever is someone running down the hall telling everyone how great the interview was and saying it is ok ” they have been laid off from the last 6 jobs in the last 3 years, but none if it was their fault”. That is such crap!!  We were just doing our morning meeting when one of our favorite clients called, she and most of her team have all been with the same company for over 20 years!! That is incredible and the majority of them live and work in a borderline economically depressed area of the country, so I don’t want to hear the excuses. They don’t quite get people who leave job after job and for that matter job history is an important part of the resume and interview process for this client and many more we work with.

Now this leads me to one of those moments when I finally saw the light. As a lot of you know I consider myself more of a behaviorist than a recruiter or business owner. Just like a really good poker player can read and find tells in their opponents I can read and hear what people are going to do most of the time when it comes to interviewing, selling and how they will react to certain situations. How do I do this?  If I told everyone than those of you smart enough to read might actually be half as successful as I am, so for now it’s my secret(s). But back to the light, I was attempting to get back together with my girlfriend for the 3rd time when she asked me to help her with her resume. That is when it finally made sense to me, she had a span of 3 years when she had 6 jobs. Just leaving for any old reason (my boss was mean to me that day, this other company offered me 1.00 dollar more) running from one problem to the next without trying to make her current situation better or for that matter herself better.

Again, dating is so much like interviewing if you ever get the chance to see your significant others resume and they have  bad job history, put on your NIKES and run like Forest Gump did !!!

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