Recession Proofing Your Career w/ @kris_dunn #HRFamous

On episode 109 of The HR Famous Podcast, long-time HR leaders (and friends) Tim Sackett and Kris Dunn come together to discuss the rise of tech layoffs, Elon Musk’s acquisition of Twitter, and how to be a recession-proof recruiter.

Listen below and be sure to subscribe, rate, and review (iTunes) and follow (Spotify)!

1:30 – Tim shares that it feels like the world is on fire with tech layoffs everywhere around us. KD says Marriott is still hiring strong. KD is finding that the “recession” is impacting particular industries more than others unlike any other recession before. 

4:30 – Tim shares some stats around hiring and unemployment. The projected unemployment rate isn’t expected to increase that much in the next 10 years. Tim notes that we’re not making enough people to fill jobs. 

6:40 – KD has a rising senior in college and he is nervous about an impending recession so he made a move to secure a job at a past employer for post-grad. 

11:40 – As we all know, Elon Musk bought Twitter and gutted the Twitter staff. There have been a lot of rumors swirling around that Twitter is on the edge of shutting down any day. 

16:00 – Elon made an email to the Twitter employee saying that it’s going to be a hard place to work at. KD references Tony Hsieh from Zappos when he would give his employees money to leave if their company wasn’t for them. 

20:00 – Tim notes that these are mature companies, not start-ups and they have to be cognizant of their burn rates. 

21:45 – Tim asks KD what recruiters aren’t going to lose their jobs. KD notes that it will be highly dependent on the type of positions being recruited for and the culture of the company they work for but ultimately, it depends on how many positions they close. 

24:20 – Another trait that KD notes in a recession-proof recruiter is the handling of a hiring manager relationship. This depends on how they handle updates and how they help and influence the efficiency of the process. Tim also thinks it’s important to have the skill set of an HR generalist. 

29:30 – Tim thinks it’s vital to be visible as an employee. Although that doesn’t mean you have to be in the office, you have to put yourself out there in whatever space you’re in. 

I’m Your King for Pretty Research!!! #HireMorePrettyPeople

If you read this blog for a while, you know I’m absolutely fascinated, almost to an unhealthy level, with research about pretty people. First, as a society, we throw way too much praise and privilege at attractive people. Take a look at Instagram follower numbers. Take a look at TikTok follower numbers. We love to pay attention to pretty people!

So, the world of academia did not disappoint, and once again came out with another study that proves my point. Pretty people, on average, are better than ugly people! But this one has a nice little wrinkle that I think most of us will like.

First, I have to come clean with a confession.

I have a disorder. I think it would probably be considered mental, but it has to do with the physical body, so it’s in a confusing space. I have Reverse Body Dysmorphic Disorder. Stop! Before you go all crazy and try to cancel me, I’m not making fun of people that have Body Dysmorphic Disorder! As Taylor Swift poetically says, “You need to calm down.”

100% True Story. When I look in the mirror, I honestly think to myself, “You know what, kid, not bad. People could do worse. Have a great day!” I look at myself getting ready in the morning and think I look pretty damn good!

I then, later that same exact day, will see a picture of myself that someone took and go, “For the love of God! How did I turn into Shrek on stage!” That my reverse body dysmorphia. Some people look in the mirror and see Shrek when they should see a prince. I see a prince when I should probably just see some middle-aged dude who needs to work out more!

Why do I share this confession? Because this new research as it helps me make sense of my own dilemma. The University of Missouri and DePaul University researchers found that pretty people have better lives! Okay, it’s a little more involved than that, but that is my layman’s take on the research! Surprise, surprise! Pretty people’s lives are better! Who knew?!

From the research:

Three studies examined the association between physical attractiveness and meaning in life. Study 1 (N = 305 college students) showed that self-reported physical attractiveness positively correlated with meaning in life. Study 2 (N = 598 noncollege adults) replicated the association between self-reported physical attractiveness and meaning in life and extended those findings, demonstrating that outside perceptions of attractiveness are linked to outside perceptions of how meaningful a person’s life is. Study 3 (N = 331 targets, 97 raters) replicated these findings and probed the nuances of the relationships between outside ratings and self-reports of attractiveness and meaning in life. Across the studies, existential significance, or the feeling that one’s life matters, was the facet of meaning that primarily explained the link between attractiveness and meaning in life. In addition, a person’s view of their own attractiveness is more indicative of their well-being than outsider ratings. Implications for our understanding of meaning in life are discussed.

Turns out, your perception of your own attractiveness is key to your life outlook!

I think this is why our mothers tell us we are all pretty and handsome, even when we aren’t. There’s a chance we just might believe them, and in the end, that’s all that matters! The key is you truly have to believe it. You can’t just be like, “Girl, I slay!” and then ten minutes later, look in the mirror and see flaws.

I love pretty research because it’s all truly based on this concept.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. You might not think you’re beautiful, but if a majority of people you surround yourself with think you’re beautiful, well, your world will be a better place. If you truly are attractive, but you surround yourself with people who make you feel ugly, well, your world is awful.

I’m not blind, but I’ve met some blind people and have had this conversation about pretty. Their definition of pretty is way different than mine, and it makes me envious. I would love to “see” the world through their non-seeing eyes for a bit to understand the power of that ability. To see someone as attractive based on non-physical attributes would definitely make our world a better place. We get a bit of this when we meet someone who we feel is of average attractiveness, but the more we get to know the person, the more they become attractive to us. Or, meeting someone who we find very attractive and they open their mouth, and immediately you view them as less attractive.

So, maybe my hypothesis about hiring more pretty people needs to change a little bit. The new hypothesis will be “hire more people who truly believe they are pretty”!

Your Weekly Dose of Recruiting Tech – @SmartRank_ai

Today on the Weekly Dose, I take a look at recruiting applicant ranking and automation technology SmartRank.ai. I first ran into SmartRank at the 2022 HR Technology Conference, and I was immediately interested in learning more.

I’m trying something new with the Weekly Dose, and I’m going to try doing these mini demos and Q&A. Take a look and let me know what you think:

TL;DW: (Too Long: Didn’t Watch)

SmartRank is a piece of recruiting technology you and your team have to demo! At first glimpse, it seems like it’s just an applicant ranking software, but it’s really a transformative way of hiring that is completely different than what you’re doing now. It’s one of the only recruiting technologies I’ve seen in the past five years that puts your recruiters in the driver’s seat to truly become Talent Advisors to Hiring Managers!

SmartRank also has embedded a ton of recruiter automation that they don’t really even talk about as part of their primary product, which is really state-of-the-art technology within the recruiting industry. Also, SmartRank has some of the best applicants to hire analytics on the market. Built by a former hiring manager, this is a product that will help you recruit higher quality and also one that will immediately get your hiring managers involved in a much more robust way within your hiring process.

The Future of Recruiting Brought to You via A.I. ChatGPT

The robots are definitely taking your job, at least my job! I got access to ChatGPT this week. ChatGPT is a chatbot that employs deep learning to produce text that resembles that of a human and is based on the GPT-3.5 language model. OpenAI’s Chat GPT can respond to numerous questions in a natural way, much like a personal tutor who is well-versed in all subjects.

Basically, it’s going to change the world as we know it!!!

As a content creator (that’s what bloggers call ourselves nowadays), I pride myself on doing research and offering up to my audience some knowledge and, hopefully, some intelligent opinions. With ChatGPT, you can basically ask it any question, and within seconds it delivers a very real life-like response that seems pretty well-educated. Of course, it’s a work in progress, so it’s not perfect, but let me give you some examples:

How will hiring be impacted in the United States in 2023? (An insightful question from Tim!)

The answer from ChatGPT:

The U.S. hiring landscape is constantly changing and evolving. In 2023, we can expect to see a number of changes in the hiring process. Here are some trends we can expect to see in 2023:

1. Increase in Remote Work: More companies will embrace remote work and hire remote employees, which will open up opportunities for workers across the country.

2. Rise of Automation: Automation will continue to grow and become more prevalent in the hiring process. AI-driven recruitment and interviewing tools will streamline the hiring process.

3. Focus on Diversity and Inclusion: Companies will continue to focus on creating a diverse and inclusive workforce. Diversity and inclusion initiatives will become a priority for many organizations.

4. Increase in Automated Job Matching: Automated job matching platforms will become more popular, allowing companies to quickly match candidates with the right job openings.

5. Increased Use of Social Media: Social media will continue to be a powerful tool for recruiting and engaging with potential candidates. Companies will use social media to advertise open positions, as well as to build relationships with potential candidates.

The Response from a real-ish Human (Tim)

God Damn, that’s pretty good!

Now, given this is exactly what you would find from major analyst houses that cover Talent Acquisition. But if you don’t have the time and want that same answer in a few seconds, it’s an outstanding answer!

Is it really groundbreaking thought leadership? No, it’s fairly vanilla, but it is accurate.

What will the future of the job of a recruiter look like? (by Tim)

The response from ChatGPT –

In the future, recruiters will continue to play a key role in the hiring process. However, the job of a recruiter will evolve and change over time. We can expect to see the following changes in the role of a recruiter in the future:

1. Increased Use of Technology: Recruiters will use a variety of technology tools to streamline the recruitment process. AI-driven recruitment tools, automated job-matching platforms, and video interviewing platforms will become more prevalent.

2. Greater Focus on Diversity and Inclusion: Recruiters will place a greater emphasis on diversity and inclusion in the recruitment process. They will use data-driven techniques to identify qualified candidates from diverse backgrounds.

3. More Strategic Role: Recruiters will take on more of a strategic role in the recruitment process. They will focus on building relationships with potential candidates and leveraging technology to find the best possible hires.

4. Increased Emphasis on Data: Recruiters will use data to inform their recruitment decisions and track the effectiveness of their recruitment efforts. They will analyze data to identify areas for improvement and make sure their recruitment processes are optimized.

The Response from a real-ish Human (Tim)

I have a bit of a different take, but this is still a very strong response that took like two seconds to produce! I think in the future, this blog will just be Tim and GPT talking shop!

Again, you can see the responses are fairly vanilla but also pretty accurate of what most people in the industry think. In the future, recruiting technology will allow recruiters to have more capacity, and with this capacity, recruiters will have more time to be more strategic, and have very specific focuses around talent, and data will be leveraged much more than it is today.

What did it miss? Recruiters of the future, with this extra capacity, will be able to spend more time with the best candidates. Also, AI will more consistently generate a higher quality of applicants for us to select from, as most bias will be eliminated and controlled for. But that is all opinion, so still a very powerful response in two seconds!

So, will AI be taking our jobs? Probably not tomorrow, but a day is coming when your job, at the very least, will be changed by AI like ChatGPT. We made the switch from laborer to creator in our society pretty well. I think we’ll make the transition from creator to “narrator” as well in a similar fashion.

Should You Ever Ask About Pay During a Job Interview?

NO! YES! I DON’T KNOW! WHY ARE WE YELLING!?

This question gets asked so often by all levels of individuals who are going through a job search. From entry levels to seasoned professionals, no one really knows the correct answer because, like most things in life, it depends on so many factors!

First off, you look like an idiot if you show up to an interview and in the first few minutes you drop the pay question!

“So, yeah, before we get too deep into this, how much does the job pay!?” 

Mistake #1! 

First, if you’re asking about what the job pays in a real face-to-face interview or virtual interview, you’re doing it wrong! The time to ask about pay is almost immediately, even when you’re desperate for the job. Usually, this happens during a screening call, email, or text message from someone in recruiting or HR. Talent Acquisition and HR Pros expect this question, so it’s really not a big deal.

The problem we get into is this belief that somehow asking about pay and salary looks bad on us as a candidate. “Oh, all you care about is the pay and not our great company!?”

Mistake #2! 

Actually, TA and HR would prefer to get this big issue out of the way right away before they fall in love with you and find out they can’t afford you. Doesn’t matter if you make $15/hr or $100K per year. Everyone involved needs to understand what it’s going to take to hire you. As a candidate, even when you desperately want the job, you still have power. You can still say, “No.”

The best thing you can do is get the pay question out of the way, upfront, so both you and the company can determine if you will truly be the best hire. The worst thing that can happen during an interview is you both fall in love with each other, then at the end find out it won’t work financially! That’s a killer!

Mistake #3! 

As a candidate, you get referred to a position, and you have a pretty good idea of what the pay will be. Your friend works at the company, even in the same position, and makes $45K, so you’re not going to ask because you feel you already know.

The problem is the company might not see your experience and education the same as your friends, or the market has shifted (like a Pandemic hit, and now the market pays less for your skills). For whatever reason, you are thinking of one number, and they are thinking of another. This gets awkward when it all comes out at the end of the hiring process.

So, once again, be transparent. “Hey, my friend actually referred me and loves her job and the company. She also told me what she makes. I’m comfortable with that level, but I just want to make sure we are on the same page for a starting salary/wage before we keep going.” Simple. Straight-forward. Appreciated.

Yes, ask about Pay! 

Yes, ask about pay, but “no,” don’t ask about pay as the last step of the interview process. Calm down. You’re not some wolf of Wall Street expert negotiator who’s going to wow them with your brilliance and get $100K more than others doing the same job. Most jobs have a set salary range that is pretty small, so you might get a little movement, but there is really no need to play hardball.

In fact, from a negotiation standpoint, getting your figure out early with a statement like, “I just want to make sure we are in the same park. I’m looking for $20-22/hr in my next job. Does this position pay that?” It gives you and the company some room to negotiate, but it’s a safe conversation since you both put some bumpers around where that conversation will go.

Also, if you decide you want more, it’s a great starting point. “Yes, I really like the job and the company, and I’m interested in working for you. I know I said I was looking for $22/hr, but Mary told me I would also be doing “X,” and honestly, I think that job pays a bit more than $22/hr. Can we discuss?”

Discussions of pay can be difficult because we often find talking about how much money we make taboo. I blame our parents! They never talked to us about it, and if the subject was ever brought up, we got hushed immediately! Raise your hand if you knew what your Dad made when you were 12! Not many hands are up!

The reality is it should be a very transparent, low-stress conversation. This is where I am. This is what I want from this job. Are we on the same page?

The Best Job Titles of 2022!

At least a couple of times a year, I share something from my friend, Rob Kelly, over at OnGig, and this was something he and his team put together earlier this year.

100+ Creative & Funny Job Titles by Department & Position

I think we are all a bit of job title whores, in a sense! I mean, if you’re a “director,” you really want to be a “vice president.” If you’re a VP, you want to be a “chief of something.” And on and on it goes. A manager wants to be a senior manager. A “typist I” wants to be a “typist II”. We love our titles!

My buddy Kris Dunn let me choose my own title when I first started writing over at Fistful of Talent, and I chose “Chief Storyteller.” Then I started writing a lot and showed up at a conference, and they had my title as “President of FOT,” and that to this day, gets KD all up in arms!

I think we should allow people just to choose whatever title they want to call themselves. I mean, if Karen wants to talk to the manager, make yourself the manager!

Here are my favorite titles from Ongig’s list:

Ambassador of Buzz (Corporate Communications Associate) – didn’t Rod make Jerry his “Ambassador of Quan”? If you know, you know!

Colon Lover (Copywriter) – I like big butts, and I can not lie. Oh wait, I’m terrible at grammar, wrong colon!

Collector of Business Cards (Business Development Rep) – I haven’t had business cards for like five years, and when someone asks me for one, I just take out my phone and Google my name!

VP of ABC (“Always Be Closing”) (VP of Sales Team) – it’s not a list without a Glengarry reference!

Head of Customer Wow (Head of Customer Service) – I love a “Wow” experience!

Vibe Manager & Head of all things Awesome (Head of HR) – Hell to the yeah! You feel me?!

C3PO – Chief Power Plugs & Patches Officer (CTO) – Stop it! Perfect title.

Chief People-Herder ( Community Manager) – These cats aren’t going to herd themselves! This also works for HR leaders.

Digital Overlord (Web Site Manager) – Anything with “overlord” is a winner!

Head of PR and Other Fun Stuff (PR Director) – good. Head of Fun Stuff – better.

Lead Enabler (Assistant) – There’s so much truth in this title, I felt it in my soul.

Captain Underappreciated (Office Manager) – This one made me remember the Captain Underwear books my boys read growing up!

Chief Cheerleader (CEO) – I think every single one of us needs our own Cheerleader. None better than your CEO!

Dr. No (CFO) – If I had a dime for every time…

Master of Coin (CFO) – Game of Thrones, anyone?

King of Sneakers – this might be my new title for the world!

Master of Disaster (Crisis Manager) – It’s funny! Until it’s not.

Out-of-Work Officer – And one for the sign of the times.

I get why we have titles. I get organizational dynamics. I spent the first half of my career title chasing. I got to be 35 years old, and I wasn’t a VP, and I thought I had failed. Then I finally got the VP title and realized the title meant nothing because it was really about what responsibility you have.

I’ve met managers who had the ultimate responsibility to change their company and their world. I’ve met chiefs that couldn’t change the size of the computer screen on their desk.

People won’t admit that titles matter to them. They act like it doesn’t matter. It only doesn’t matter to those who can choose their own title! For 99% of the world, titles are very important to our personal psyche. Titles give confidence and status to those who need that. Don’t ever discount the importance of a title for someone else. We can do that for ourselves, but not others!

What is your favorite job title you’ve seen or had? Hit me in the comments.

Recruiting Communication Hacks #1

I was out at iCIMS Inspire last week, and I was listening to a recruiting product leader and TA leader talk about a process involving texting candidates. iCIMS purchased TextRecruit years ago, and it’s now baked into iCIMS. I think across the board, everyone believes you should be texting candidates at this point. It’s 100%. You won’t meet anyone in recruiting who’s like, “Hey, yeah, texting candidates is bad” as a form of communication with candidates.

I say statements like that above to see the one dumb person on LinkedIn who will share this post and give me the one outlandish reason in the world when you wouldn’t text a candidate. “Well, TIM! I once had a candidate who was blind and deaf and lived only underwater and communicated telepathically, so what about that person!? Should we text them!?” Yes! Now, go away.

For the most part, recruiters are pretty good about using expected communication norms with candidates. We kind of have to. If you’re awful at comms, your recruiting career will be shorted lived. This doesn’t mean there aren’t recruiters out there working in sweatshops that still don’t spam. Of course, we’ll always have that. But, for the most part, the vast majority of professional recruiters, agencies, RPO, and corporate try to communicate around expected societal norms in the areas they recruit.

One of those comms standards is the Opt-Out text message sentence:

“If you no longer wish to receive text messages from this company, reply “STOP” to unsubscribe from any further messages.”

Now, these messages all sound and look the same. We basically just copy each other. One person, one time, wrote a version of what’s above, and we’ve stolen and tweaked this same message.

When I was at iCIMS, this leader was sharing an example, and this came up, and no one batted an eye. Yep. Yep. Move on. That’s when it hit me. That’s an opportunity! Every single comm we send that touches a candidate is an opportunity to stand out and leverage your brand! We should be better than what’s above!

So, I started thinking. What would a great opt-out text message be for a recruiter? Try these on for size:

“If you no longer want to receive messages from Tim, simply reply “I HATE TIM” and make him cry!”

“Yeah, we know you didn’t opt in for this, but can you blame us? We wanted to offer you a job!? Reply “No Job For Me” to Stop these messages.”

“Hate Text Spam? You can call me instead and stop all of this nonsense! Come on. I dare you!”

“Look, I’m a Stan! No cap, but you’re super dank. Texts hit different but if you’re sus just reply “This ain’t it chief”

“Hey, I just texted you, and this is crazy! But if you don’t like me, just reply.”Maybe Later”

Wait, we get it. This isn’t for you. Before you opt-out, maybe you know someone who could use this. Please share it with them. Reply “Stop” to end these messages.

Had enough!?

We might want just to disregard this and think about our corporate brand and being “professional.” The reality is this isn’t your corporate brand. This is your employment brand. For some, yeah, just stick to the same old boring script. It’s safe. For many of us, let’s show candidates we can be fun and have fun, and we don’t take ourselves so seriously.

If we are going to jam thousands of text messages out to candidates, you might want to have a little personality in those communications. You don’t have to. You can be like everyone else. But you can.

Dare to be a bit different!

American Government Has a Giant Talent Problem!

Coming out of the midterm elections, I was neither upset nor happy with any of the results. I was disgusted by how far we’ve fallen on the talent funnel. Let’s be honest. No one was really ever impressed by very many politicians. It’s not just an American running joke. It’s a worldwide running joke. Basically, only major narcissists and idiots want to be politicians everywhere. We luck out if one of those giant narcissist idiots actually has a brain.

There’s a rule in talent acquisition, and organizational behavior – “Bad hires worse.”

So, if you fill the government with idiots running the show, they will hire bigger idiots to help them run your country into the ground faster. Red, blue, purple, it doesn’t matter. Bad hires worse.

Recently, I’ve had a number of conversations from the federal government down to local city government leaders, all facing the same problem. They can not get anyone of quality to apply for their jobs. In many cases, this hiring problem is market driven. A software engineer making $250K in private industry is not going to take $85K to work on dated systems and technology, no matter how much they might love their country, their state, or their city.

But it’s not just compensation.

Great talent also doesn’t want to work with a bunch of fools who are unmotivated to change the broken system and make it better. They have too many options. For decades the government has developed a process of hiring where they believed they had all the power and would make people jump through endless hoops to get one of these “amazing” government opportunities. Believing this aggressively long process would end with only the best. What they got were only the desperate few who wanted a job they would never get fired from, regardless of how awful they performed. They didn’t get better talent. They got survivors of an awful process.

Government: “Tim, how can we get candidates interested in our jobs?”

Me: “You’re f*cking kidding me, right?”

Government: “No, seriously, we need to fill these roles.”

Me: Giving an exact plan on what needs to happen.

Government: “Yeah, we can’t change anything. So, what else do you have?”

Look, I get there are some great people working in government jobs. I know some of them personally. To a person, they will tell me it’s a hopeless cause. They are surrounded by too many peers who show up and do the minimum and don’t want any change because that might mean they have to do more. The system has stage 5 cancer, and the patients don’t want a cure. They just want more pain meds to live peacefully until they die.

Now, you would think we all see this, and our elected officials see this, and they would be like, we have to cut out the cancer and start over. But bad hires worse. Our elected officials are too dumb and too narcissistic to understand they are surrounded by idiots. They are surrounded by “Yes” people. They’ve surrounded themselves with people who think they are working for a rock star.

Okay, you bitched enough. What’s the plan?

We have to stop electing idiots—all sides.

In less than two years, we will have to choose between two giant idiots for President. One who can’t put together two coherent sentences in a row, and one who thinks this is all just some gameshow on tv with no consequences. That’s the “best” America has to offer us! This is where we are in hiring for America. Two final candidates you wouldn’t allow to watch your children for an hour unsupervised!

We have to demand smart, ethical, and hardworking people lead us. We have to compensate these people at the level top talent can get. Why? Because we pay them like crap now and then, they use their position to get wealthy and stop acting in our best interest.

Great leaders hire great talent. And that rolls downhill into government positions that aren’t hired directly by politicians. We have to stop acting like the government and start acting like we need to run a profitable business.

All levels of government basically only hire kinds of people right now:

  1. Entry-level with degrees that couldn’t get them a good job.
  2. Experienced low performers who got fired from every other job.
  3. Dreamers who have been disillusioned, yet.

They can not compete with private industry unless they drastically change. Part of that change has to be their ability to get rid of low performers easily. Right now, that does not happen. It’s a two-sided issue. You can’t bring in better without getting rid of the walking dead. Accountability has to start at the top and filter down into every level.

Bad hires worse. Rant over.

87% of Employee are Thinking About a Promotion, and That’s a Problem for You! @iCIMS #ICIMSINSPIRE

iCIMS 2023 Workforce Report is out, and it’s jammed full of some great data and facts. Here’s just one that caught my eye:

iCIMS 2023 Workforce Report

Now, some will read this and think, “Wow, that’s awesome!” But if you’re a leader of people, you quickly understand how problematic this is! 87% of folks want a promotion. About 10% actually get a promotion. And we wonder why over 50% of our workforce is disengaged.

You can download the full report here.

I didn’t even give you the good stuff, here is another peak:

  • 63% of job seekers say a primary factor in their job search is whether the job is remote, hybrid, or on-prem. (editors note: shouldn’t this be 100%? 😉 What this shows is how important where the work of the job is done more than ever.
  • 80% of workers do not feel secure financially or professionally. (Ouch)
  • 2 out 5 workers claim to not have a work-life balance.
  • More here.

What about all those employees who want a promotion?! What can we do?!

This is where great leaders make their money.

Being able to provide opportunity and development, mentorship, and on-demand training programs, are all a part of the plan. The biggest part of the plan truly has little to do with all of this. Your employees must feel they can trust you with their careers. That you, with them, have created a plan and will follow through with that plan to reach their goals.

Every employee can have a plan, but are you willing to be upfront enough with them about what that might look like? For some, their path might be in a year. For others, it’s much longer, and this is where it gets really difficult. Being able to provide a great opportunity takes a combination of great tools, great leadership, effort, and patience. I find that most organizations fail on at least 2 out of 4.

Great tools can be expensive, but the ROI is strong. Great leadership is expensive and hard to maintain because we also under-invest in that as well. Effort and Patience are the two that any employee can do, and the ones who have those usually succeed, but those are also very rare. This then comes down to if our leaders were born or built. We can debate that for eternity. The reality is it’s both.

I think another great question to ask this 87% of employees would be if we can keep all things the same. Same job. Same location. Same everything. Except we give you the same raise you would get if you were promoted, would you still want the promotion? I’m guessing that 87% drops to around 25%, and that’s more doable. One in four employees wanting a promotion seems like a number that makes more sense. Our problem is how we take care of our individual contributors.

Another day, another post. Right now, you have an 87% problem. Have fun!

The Trait Every Employer is Looking for in a New Employee

Don’t buy into the hype! “Oh, just do what you love!” That’s not being an adult. That’s being a moron! Just do what makes you happy! No, that’s what a child does.

“Tim, we just want to hire some ‘adults’!” I hear this statement from a lot of CEOs I talk with currently!

That means most of the people they are hiring aren’t considered adults by these leaders. Oh, they fit the demographic of being an adult from an age perspective, but they still act like children!

I tell people when I interview them and they ask about our culture, I say, “We hire adults.”

That means we hire people into positions where they are responsible for something. Because we hire adults, they take responsibility for what they are responsible for. If I have to tell them to do their jobs, they’re not adults, they’re children. We don’t employ children.

I think about 70% of the positions that are open in the world could have the same title –

“Wanted: Adults”.

Those who read that and got it could instantly be hired, and they would be above-average employees for you! Those who read it and didn’t understand are part of the wonder of natural selection.

How do you be an Adult?

– You do the stuff you say you’re going to do. Not just the stuff you like, but all the stuff.

– You follow the rules that are important to follow for society to run well. Do I drive the speed limit every single time? No. Do I come to work when my employer says I need to be there? Yes.

– You assume positive intent on most things. For the most part, people will want to help you, just as you want to help others. Sometimes you run into an asshole.

– You understand that the world is more than just you and your desires.

– You speak up for what is right when you can. It’s easy to say you can always speak up for what is right, but then you wouldn’t be thinking like an adult.

– You try and help those who can’t help themselves. Who can’t, not who won’t?

My parents and grandparents would call this common sense, but I don’t think ‘being an adult’ is common sense anymore. Common sense, to be common, has to be done by most. Being an adult doesn’t seem to be very common lately!

So, you want to hire some adults? I think this starts with us recognizing that being an adult is now a skill in 2021. A very valuable skill. Need to fill a position, maybe we start by first finding adults, then determining do we need these adults to have certain skills, or we can teach adults those skills!

The key to great hiring in today’s world is not about attracting the right skills, it’s about attracting adults who aren’t just willing to work but understand the value of work and individuals who value being an adult.

I don’t see this as a negative. I see it as an opportunity for organizations that understand this concept. We hire adults first and skills second. Organizations that do this will be the organizations that win.

The Motley Fool has a great section in their employee handbook that talks about being an adult:

“We are careful to hire amazing people. Our goal is to unleash you to perform at your peak and stay out of your way. We don’t have lots of rules and policies here by design. You are an amazing adult, and we trust you to carve your own path, set your own priorities, and ask for help when you need it.”

You are an amazing ‘adult,’ and we trust you

If only it was so simple!