May it be conversing a cop to let you off with a warning; trying your luck with a girl you have been meaning to ask out, introducing yourself to your neighbor’s dog or interviewing a candidate for your organization, the most significant part in any conversation is the starting and the ending.
How do you usually hire someone? Receive an application; schedule an interview; skim through the resume – simultaneously asking questions when the candidate is right across you; and finally after interviewing more than a dozen that day, you shortlist the one who seemed the best. Congratulations you just strangled the fun out of it.
When you interview a candidate, every word in the conversation is required to scream out Aloha! The word Aloha itself has a meaning that goes beyond any dictionary you come across. Aloha is a greeting, a wish, an ice breaker, a ton full of warmth & fun; everyone has to unfurl their own Aloha approach. Your interview with the candidate may be the first or the final aspect of your conversation with the person. Hence, here’s some food for thought, for every hiring process you get into:
In The Pre-interview Phase
Read the résumé all through the end and make a note of the one which you believe are not qualified for the next round of the process – because you’ll be building a template and individually sending out emails, politely rejecting them. Make sure you are wishing them of ‘great opportunities that lie ahead’. Don’t write one if you aren’t exaggerating the politeness to the extreme. The candidate needs to believe that you put an effort in rejecting him in the most polite way possible. This will leave a good impression. You may never know the next time he applies and is a perfect fit for a role or the next time you apply and he turns out to be the hiring manager.
Now you have the pre-filtered qualified candidate résumés with you. As weird as it may seem, you need to start stalking them. Do a little research and get to know them as much as you can, their past, their present, what are they aspiring for, what they eat, where they hang out, who they are connected to, etc. The internet gives all these information out. Getting an insight this way is not wrong, because chances are the candidate is doing the same for you. If you are a well-known hot-shot in the industry, again the chances are that you are very-well exposed with the secrets you think not many know about.
A smart candidate will get to know enough about you to plan out a strategy on how to initiate an interview and how to lead it. He will make sure he replicates your morals and thinking in the interview. So why don’t you do the same? Get to know the candidate to get a better grip at understanding the personality and to ask the right question!
Get feedback on the candidate from mutual connections other than the references mentioned in the résumé by the candidate. A good candidate would expect that from you. Do your part sincerely and politely.
In The Interview
It’s usually a good idea to start by being the candidate yourself. This lightens up the air just in-incase the candidate hasn’t gotten to know you beforehand. Begin by an off topic remark. A compliment, a traffic situation, a nip in the air or even a light remark on the role can be a very effective ice breaker. An icebreaker helps form immediate connect, comforts the candidate and lightens up the atmosphere. He may get an idea of how to keep the tone of the conversation. Within a few seconds he’ll get the gist and follow.
Initiate a conversation from the start through to the end. This isn’t an interrogation, it’s an interview, keep it that way. This will assist to acquire a level of interest the candidate presents in the talk. This may ease up the candidate and enable to open himself up to you. Eventually the conversation will maintain a flow with a side dish of professionalism in it. You are the caterer in this situation, serve it well to get to know the customers taste.
As a recruiter your job is to build relationships and network in the most professional manner possible. So irrespective of whether you liked the candidate or not, make sure he leaves the room satisfied and without false hopes for the job. It’s a connection that needs to remain healthy and positive at least, if not everlasting. In a small world like this, you may never expect to bump into him again, but it could happen.
In The Post-Interview Phase
You aren’t a surgeon coming out of the OT to give the death news to a family of the dead patient you just operated on. You are a recruiter. To maintain the network, make sure to call up the candidate you interviewed and showcase the decency to reject him that way. Incase if the list is big then a personalized polite regret email would do the job. Let him at least have the privilege to feel important. Some may show desperation but be polite to assure them that you will make sure to notify if a suitable position opens up.
Lastly, congratulate the one(s) you hire whole-heartedly. However, if you still aren’t satisfied to finally hire someone then reschedule another round of screening if need be, don’t hire that person half-heartedly and end up firing for overlooking key skills.
Recruiters, to whom relationships matter, will have more creative means of saying aloha! This creativity can take up to thousand different forms adapting to different languages and cultures in the world. Therefore, Irrespective of that fact you are the usual recruiter or not, you need to make sure that your company presents an image of itself that portrays that they value every candidate one way or the other. It keeps up the Employer Brand of the company. Aloha!
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