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What are everyone's thoughts on constant interviewing and recruiting. I believe you should talk to as many people as possible, even if you have no open positions for them. However, I notice that this makes some people on my team uncomfortable. They feel like by doing so I am indirectly putting their job in jeopardy by looking for someone who may be "better" than them. They also feel it is not ethical to interview someone for a position that is not available. I try to tell them I am just constantly looking for good talent to add to the team but I get the feeling that no one buys that.

Any suggestions?

Brad

MattJBeckwith's picture

Hello Brad. That's a great question. My department is almost always hiring (I manage an inbound call center) so that's not usually a problem. When we're not hiring we can't really interview unless there's an open and posted position. That doesn't mean me or my managers stop looking for talented people. Internal people are a lot easier to "get to know" obviously and if I spot someone that I feel might be a great fit in my organization I talk to their manager first about that person's strengths and ambitions. If the manager is okay with it I might ask to chat with the person about their career plans all the while advising that I have nothing open at the time. These informational interviews don't happen too often and don't always lead to the person posting for the position when one does come up.

If you're just starting this I can see how your employees might feel nervous. The best way to tackle that is with open and honest feedback and communication. Have you ever actually interviewed someone (when there was no position open) and then hired that person and terminated one of your existing employees? If not, I'd mention it. If possible, try to get your employees involved in the process. Encourage them to refer potential candidates.

I would say that the most important thing to remember is to be completely honest and never lead people to believe that a position might be open if in fact there is not.

Mark's picture

Let's see if anyone can figure this one out:

Man, Boy, Donkey.

That said...

Dave, why the heck can't you interview any time you want? I do it all the time. I am constantly looking, developing relationships, and when I think I'm close, ask staff to interview someone (though I interview just fine, thank you).

Tell the team you're not, but rather, you're preparing for the inevitable org change or realignment. Every time I've asked someone to write out all the re-orgs they've been through, they are stunned. It's every year, in many places.

You're doing the right thing.

Mark

aspiringceo's picture

[quote="mahorstman"]Let's see if anyone can figure this one out:

Man, Boy, Donkey.
[/quote]

I think you may be making a reference to one of Aesop's Fables, the story of the old man the young boy and the donkey.

The moral of the story being....
"Try to please all, and you will please none."

Edmund

Mark's picture

Indeed. It's soon to be a Horstman's Law!

Mark

bradleymewes's picture

I love it! Try to please all and you will please none.

Brad

MattJBeckwith's picture

[quote="mahorstman"]Dave, why the heck can't you interview any time you want? I do it all the time.[/quote]
I'd like to clarify. The company I work for has very, very strict guidelines on officially interviewing when there is no position open. That doesn't mean that I don't "shop" for talent. My eyes are always open for talented people and I'm happy to discuss potential and future opportunities in my department. It's just not an official interview... a little less formal.

Mark's picture

So, do it unofficially. No brainer.

Mark

aspiringceo's picture

[quote="aspiringceo"]
The moral of the story being....
"Try to please all, and you will please none."
[/quote]

I was talking to a colleague about this yesterday and he sent me the following retake on an old story

An old man, a boy and a donkey were going to town. The boy rode on the donkey and the old man walked. As they went along they passed some people who remarked it was a shame the old man was walking and the boy was riding. The man and boy thought maybe the critics were right, so they changed positions.
Later, they passed some people that remarked, "What a shame, he makes that little boy walk."
They then decided they both would walk! Soon they passed some more people who thought they were stupid to walk when they had a decent donkey to ride. So, they both rode the donkey.
Now they passed some people that shamed them by saying how awful to put such a load on a poor donkey. The boy and man said they were probably right, so they decided to carry the donkey.
As they crossed the bridge, they lost their grip on the animal and he fell into the river and drowned.

The moral of the story?
If you try to please everyone, you might as well...

Kiss your ass good-bye. :lol:

Edmund

Mark's picture

It amazes me in all the years I have used that fable as an example I've never heard that twist! Classic.

Mark

FlatFeeKing's picture

Thats a great fable, I will start having to refer people to it when they ask why I am making changes.