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Should You Measure a Candidate’s Desire to Work For You in Response Time?

Jul 8

I have expectations as a leader in my organizations for other employees who are in a leadership position in my company. One of those expectations is, if I call or text you on off hours, weekends, vacations, etc., for something that is urgent to the business, I expect a reply in a rather short time frame.

Some people would not like that. I don’t care. You’re a leader, the business needs you, there’s no time clock for that.

That expectation is set for someone at a leadership level in my organization. They know this expectation before taking the job. Also, I’m not an idiot about it. I can probably count on one hand the number of times in the past five years I’ve reached out to someone on weekends or vacations expecting and needing a response.

But, what if you measured candidate quality in the same manner? Seems unreasonable, doesn’t it!?

Well, check this out:

Nardini is the CEO of the sports and men’s lifestyle site Barstool Sports. In a New York Times interview, she detailed her process for vetting job candidates. After saying she was a “horrible interviewer” because of her impatience, she explained a unique process for gauging potential hires’ interest in the job.

“Here’s something I do,” she said. “If you’re in the process of interviewing with us, I’ll text you about something at 9 p.m. or 11 a.m. on a Sunday just to see how fast you’ll respond.”

The maximum response time she’ll allow: three hours.

So, Erika believes if a candidate doesn’t reply back to her on a Sunday at 9 pm within three hours, they are not interested in a job.

This is why recruiting is hard.

You have moron leaders who come up with stupid ideas of what they think is ‘important’ and then they make you live by these dumb rules. This rule is ridiculous. Erika’s assessment of why this works is ridiculous. But, she’ll get a pass.

Why?

She’s a she. If some dumb white dude came up with the same rule the New York Times would write an expose on how this guy is a complete tyrant and out of touch with today’s world, and how crappy this candidate experience is, and how bad leadership this is, etc. But, no one will. She’s just leaning in and doing what the guys do!

Yes, she is. She’s being an idiot.

Now, I’ll say I actually agree with her on her assessment on response time, assuming the roles she is expecting a reply from in three hours are time critical roles. She runs a media site with breaking stories. Twitter has these things up in seconds, media sites need replies to what is happening within minutes and hours. So, there could be some legitimacy to something as arbitrary as measuring candidate desire by response time.

It’s fraught with issues, to be sure, but for certain roles, it might find you some good talent. Should it be a golden rule of hiring for your organization? No, that’s just dumb.

If you really want a silver bullet I ask every candidate if they’re a dog person or cat person. Works every time!

5 Comment to “Should You Measure a Candidate’s Desire to Work For You in Response Time?”

  1. It’s kind of symbolic of the world we’re living in.

    Too many people have discarded the gold standard of a structured, behavioral based interview for “tips and tricks.” Usually it’s fear based (pick the candidate with fewest flaws) or ignorance based (seeing the hiring process as a game of “Survivor”).

    In the example above, the Manager isn’t going to eliminate people that will be slow to respond – they will eliminate people that go to Church or have brunch on Sunday mornings, and people that go to bed early or spend time with their spouse/family on Sunday evening.

    Drew
    Jul 10, 2019
  2. Please spare us your comments on gender politics in the future. If you don’t know why what you said is offensive, you shouldn’t be opining on it.

    wow
    Jul 8, 2019
    • If you truly cared about this issue, you would have left your name and real email, and not just been a troll. But there you have it. It’s my blog I’ll opine on whatever I like.

      Thanks!
      Tim

      Jul 8, 2019
  3. Tim, I’d be interested in hearing your theory on dog versus cat people. You peaked my interest! Thanks.

    Nicole
    Jul 8, 2019
    • Nicole,

      Great question! It really boils down to the personality of cats and dogs. Cats could care less if you’re alive, while dogs live to see you and be with you. See, isn’t that clear? Just like choosing someone based on how fast they reply to your email! 😉

      T

      Jul 8, 2019

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