Media reports late last week showed that the economy actually grew and 200K+ new jobs were secured to start off the year. As a recruiter in digital media, this doesn’t surprise me so much. In fact, if you looked at digital media alone as an index of the strength of our economy, you’d be hard pressed to think America was suffering financially!
My firm is pretty darn busy helping clients staff up for these first few months of 2012. And, because driving revenue is the #1 priority for companies in the digital media business, sales jobs are hot right now. On fire. It’s February, which means year-end bonuses have been handed out and there’s a flurry of activity and movement. Account Executives, Sales Managers and the likes are getting calls left and right regarding job openings. Some are good and some are, or could seem, kind of sucky. The question is, how do you break through the clutter and convince the best in the business to choose you over the other guy?
Here are my top five suggestions on how you can do just that…
#1 – Develop a Positioning Strategy
I’m sure your marketing team has done a bang up job creating presentations and other collateral that clearly spell out the advantages of investing in your company for your customers. Why not share this with any internal and external recruiters you are working with so they can properly “sell” your company to potential employers?
#2 — Evangelize Your Company
Tell candidates how much you have grown. Use numbers that show revenue and employee growth. Tell candidates that this is a place that people WANT to work and prove it thru data. If you’ve got a staff longevity story, share it. If people are apt to get promoted, show statistics or give examples. If the positions you are filling are all add-to-staff, sing that story out loud.
#3 — Share Unique Benefits
Do you offer a dry cleaning stipend? Three weeks vacation at the very start? Casual Fridays, half-day Fridays in the summer? Think about the various perks that your company offers and make sure to use it as part of your pitch. As our society grows, our employees want a better work/life balance. Promote the fact that you take care of your employees, beyond the expected paycheck.
#4 – Show Respect
Even if you interview someone and you know they are not right for the job, show some respect. Remember, that person has a life and a place on this planet, just like you. Plus, he or she may be very well connected in the industry and could spread some pretty nasty things about your company. If they feel really snubbed, they might even Tweet or turn to Facebook, where they could lambast you in front of hundreds of people in the business. Be nice. Even if it hurts.
#5 — Show some Empathy
When you’re hiring, you’re also busy with your own every day job responsibilities. It can be really difficult to stop and just focus on the interviewee when you sit down. Try not to make the candidate wait too long after your scheduled meeting time. Remember, he’s taking time out of his regular job as well to meet with you. Close your door, turn off your cell phone and don’t take any interruptions. Better yet, meet the candidate outside the office so you KNOW you won’t be distracted. Show the candidate that he or she has your complete attention. I can’t TELL you what a difference this will make in having someone great WANT to come and help you be successful.
Jane Ashen Turkewitz is Client Development Director for TalentFoot Executive Search.
You’ve heard me say before that the best way to get hired is to make and foster relationships, then network, network, network. I met Camille Fetter – Founder and Managing Partner of TalentFoot – almost 2 years ago when we were introduced by a mutual connection in the digital media industry. Since that time, she has turned to me for some contract work and we have bounced lots of ideas off one-another. I like her – alot.
Unbeknownst to me, Camille had some ideas of her own in terms of working together on an every day basis! And, now, after many conversations, discussing her needs – as well as mine – we have come to a terrific agreement that’s a win-win for both parties.
I got a job because I put myself out there, talked to a ton of people, who then recommended me to others and eventually connected me with someone who I respect and admire. I hope now that 2012 is upon us, all of you will do the same. Put yourself out there. Talk to people. Make relationships. Build upon them. Doors will open – I promise you!
I still plan to “talk turkey” with all of you and hope you will all choose to tune in when I do. Until then…Carpe Diem.
This particular client had been working as a perma-freelancer within the organization for over a year and was pretty alarmed by the changes. So far, he has kept his job while the departed in the division have yet to be replaced. I asked him to try to look at the situation in a different light, ecouraging him to put forth his resume with a note saying something to the effect of “I’d like to throw my hat in the ring to secure a permanent position on your team. I have been working as a freelancer for over a year and I know the ropes and how to get things done. Although I regret that others lost their jobs, I am very enthusiastic about the direction you and the executive team are moving in. I would be eager to discuss this new direction, some ideas I have and how I can help bring the changes you envision to life. Attached is my resume for your consideration….”
My client was very uncomfortable with my proposal and told me that “I didn’t understand what was going on internally.” Well, it’s true, I’m not there and I’m not the one experiencing the turmoil. It’s normal when something like this happens to be agitated, upset and frightened. But, what I tried to show my client is that there are always two ways to look at a situation. ”Stop looking at the negative and see the positive. You ARE still there. The executive team doesn’t know you. And, you have an advantage over an outsider – you know how the company operates and you can get things done quickly and effectively because of that.”
Did my client follow my advise? I don’t think he did, which is too bad. After all, what does he have to lose? Nothing. He can only gain by putting forth the effort.
After each blog post I sign off by saying “carpe diem.” Sieze the day. It’s the people who are willing to take chances, are confident and aggressive that move forward in their careers. So the next time there’s a shake up in your department/company, after the initial shock evaporates, if you are still around, seize the day. Try to make something good come out of it. Take the “glass half full” approach to the situation.
I kind of ripped this guy a new asshole because the entire premise is so discriminatory. My father could have been an abusive drunk, my mother could be deceased and I could be single without a family picture to show. But, I also could have worked my butt off and pulled myself up by my boot straps to make something out of myself. That shows perserverence, drive and passion. But, I guess that’s not important to Nick. So be it.
Today,I received an email today from “Shannon,” who says, after reading this post: ”Hiring is discrimination all around. You presume someone would be a good fit based on the discrimination of a resume and where they went and what they did. Based upon an in-person, face-to-face interview and what the gut tells them, is also another presumption that is discrimination. I come dressed appropriately, yet I do not mesh with your personality and even though I have proven job performances, you are NOT going to hire me based upon your discrimination and your gut…”
Shannon goes on about the entire hiring process being discriminatory by its very nature. It got me thinking.
According to Webster, discrimination means “prejudiced, prejudical outlook, action or treatment.”
Is a resume a discriminatory tool? I suppose there are some aspects to it that could be. The hiring manager could certainly discriminate based on schooling. As a recruiter, I’ve had clients who have requested that candidates only come from Ivy Leagues or top tier univerisities. That’s a form of discrimination in terms of elitism and I’m never happy when a client makes this decision. And, as a resume writer I often tell clients to delete any political affiliations because it can spark negative judgements amongst hiring managers who don’t share the same political beliefs. Politics do not belong in the workplace. It’s just too divisive – and this holds true when it comes to a resume.
However – the resume is not a place for you to simply state where you have worked or gone to school. It’s a place for you to spell out your accomplishments in your career. It’s a place for you to outline how your path has made you the perfect candidate for the job you are applying for. There’s nothing prejudicial about that. If you don’t have the background or skills or “chops” for the job, you’re not going to get the interview. That’s not discrimination – that’s qualification.
As to the in-person interview, I don’t believe, as Shannon does, that making a judgement call about someone’s personality – or lack thereof – is discriminatory. If I’m the hiring manager and I find you to be abrasive and/or I don’t think you will get along with my team, then there’s a validity to that. If I don’t like you because you are a woman or you are obese, well that’s a different story. I wonder what Shannon thinks about the dating process. If I meet someone and am not attacted to them or don’t feel as though they share my core values, is that discriminatory? That would be a bold use of the word and I think it’s wrong. The hiring process is not perfect. There are elements of it that can, and often are discriminatory (to my dismay). But, overall, I think it’s a mistake to say the entire system is prejudicial even if certain people within the system are predisposed to prejudices. What do you think?
Paige Young moved from Marketing Director at Expedia to VP at Publicis Consultants USA.
Jennifer Thompson moved from Managing Director Int’l Ops at Oshkosh to SVP Crisis and Issues Practice at Edelman.
Michael Freitag joined as Partner at Joele Frank, Wilkinson Brimmer Katcher.
Andrea Redniss joined as Managing Director Digital at Media Storm.
Ben Waldman joined as Associate Art Director (Art) at Mr Youth.
John Young joined as Associate Art Director (Copy) at Mr. Youth.
Clare-Marie Harris Panno joined as SVP President of Insight at Posterscope.
Martin Porter joined as VP Directory, Hyperspace at Posterscope.
Jeffrey Hinz joined as Managing Partner/Digital Director at MediaCom US.
Dave Weaver joined as Managing Director at One Agency.
Leigh Baker joined as Global Group Account Director (Mars) at SpapientNitro.
Aaron Griffiths joined as Creative Director at Chiat NY.
DJ Pierce joined as Executive Creative Director at Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal.
Brad Feldman moved from Executive Director, Integrated Marketing at Time Inc. to Senior Director Creative Strategy at Yahoo!.
Tara Brown joined as Media Relations Manager at The Inspiration Networks.
Jennifer Garnick joined as VP Communications at Independent Film & Television Alliance (IFTA).
Jennifer Bennett joined as VP Licensing and Merchandise at Entertainment One (eOne).
Marnie Black was named SVP PR at AMC.
Dan Rubin joined as Director Digital Strategy at Meredith Integrated Marketing.
Nolan Baynes joined as Marketing Director at Music Choice.
Christine Schoultz joined as VP Marketing at BrightRoll.
Rob Collins joined as VP Brand Activation at TNT, TBS and Turner Classic Movies.
Nicola Bridges joined as SVP Product and Audience Development at Real Age.
Cathy Murphy joined as VP Business Development and Strategic Alliances at CBS Television Stations.
Misha Louy was named Executive Producer at BBDO.
Doug McVehil joined as SVP Music Programming, Talent and Content Ops at VEVO.
Scott Reich was named VP of Original Content/Programming VEVO.
Jason Musante was named Content Lead at Collective.
Dana Booton joined as GM Head of Production at Film Roman/Starz.
Rob Weller moved from Producer at Weller/Grossman Productions to EVP Programming and Production at MUSL TV.
Lauren Gellert joined as VP Production and Development at ION Media Networks.
Will Misselbrook was named Head of Interactive Production at BBH NY.
Matt O’Brien was named VP Creative Affairs at Reveille.
Dena Ross was named Digital Media Producer at A&E TV.
Patricia Cohen joined as VP National Accts. at Adspace Digital Mall Network.
Onnalee MacDonald joined as Executive Director, West Coast Sales at Billboard.
Christine Porretta moved from Producer at Kaboose.com to Site Editor at TheBump.com.
Edward Enninful joined as Fashion and Style Director at W.
Mitzi Miller joined as Editor-in-Chief at Jet.
Adam Bornstein moved from Fitness Editor at Men’s Health to Editorial Director at LIVESTRONG.com.
Robertson Barrett joined as VP News and Finance at Yahoo!.
Lynn Andriani joined as Food Editor at Oprah.com.
Neil Katz joined as Executive News Editor at Huffington Post.