Do you want to be in contact with a recruiter? Do not use Facebook!

We can exchange and receive information in real-time; this dynamic and multiple sources’ network boosts innovation, knowledge sharing and relationships’ building.

The organisations have to embrace this revolution and their efforts are focused on (virtual) collaboration and cooperation. The results of this revolution brought also the organisations to be more open:  they have opened their doors to the external world. For example, the recruiting function has been affected by this cultural change; think about LinkedIn, the meetups and Glassdoor. You can search about the company using different media and get to know better the company culture. If you want to reach out a recruiter, it is super easy.

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So, why are you using Facebook? Why would you contact a recruiter via Facebook? Why would you move a contact from the professional level to the personal one? A recruiter might decide to do not answer a message. Additionally, your message might not show up because it has gone to the “spam folder”. So, I would not do it…and if you ask, the recruiters should not use Facebook to find candidates for the same reasons.

Dear recruiter…

Dear Recruiter,

I hope that you’re ready to start the new week.

There will be new candidates to be interviewed, feedback to be delivered and you will surely have to organize (or reorganize) one or more recruiting processes.

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You have to remember that your relationship with the hiring manager is very important. You have to work on it, you have to listen and you have to understand the recruitment needs; however, do not forget to have opinions. Being available and responsive with a manager does not mean always that you need to agree with her/him. If you do so, well, apart from creating problems in the recruiting process itself, you will always be considered as a support and never as a partner. A recruiting process is only successful if there is a true collaboration between the recruiter and the hiring manager. Remember that having opinions is a good thing; a recruiter without personality or opinions will be always an average recruiter.

Finally, what is the worst thing to tell to your hiring manager? This role is difficult.

What would the answer to the question if I was the manager? Well, what are you doing here then?

The data scientist self-promotion is like the hacker case.

The recruiting world is influenced by trends, temporary or medium-term ones, as it happens for other areas and departments of an organisation.

This post is not about any employer branding or talent acquisition strategy. I’d like to talk about a specific job title: the Data Scientist. Oh yes, we will talk about a job title, not a job profile. Why are we not talking about a job profile? The Data scientists have different expertise, skills and focus considering the organisations they work for. Another variable to be taken into account is the tech stack.  So, defining or discussing the job profile is extremely complicated.

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During the last two/three years, we’ve observed a surge of the need of data experts; it is especially true if we consider the Data Scientists, the insights’ experts. No problem so far, considering that companies discover their needs and try to fill the gaps looking at specific expertise into the labour market. The problem does not stem from the need to have one or many data scientists; the issue rises with respect to the research of this profile. Many professional who minimally work on the insights part are used to define themselves data scientists. It happens very often. If a professional manages data, the Data Scientist job title is listed on Linkedin. However, a Data Manager is not automatically a Data Scientist.

Do you remember when many software developers were used to defining themselves hackers?

We are in the same situation…. Data rhymes with Scientist as it happened with Software and Hacker.

 

Stop talking only about the candidate experience. There is much more!

Let’s start with a simple statement: the candidate experience is very important. However, we need to broaden our horizons. We need to talk about the customer journey when it comes to recruiting and employer value proposition. The customer journey is very important.

Why?

The first thing to consider is that the candidate experience is related to professionals who are already interested in your company. They might be already part of a recruiting process. Being exclusively focused on them leads to exclude an important part of the “market“. Following the advice of the best marketing or acquisition departments, we cannot forget the prospects (for example, the so-called passive candidates) or our customer base (the employees). Therefore, the organization must think about providing a service to them too.

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Then, the recruiting processes involve and request the commitment of professionals of the organization, not just the recruiting team. Therefore, all the participants in a recruiting process (for example the interviewers) are brand ambassadors   https://goo.gl/fBP0zM . We must not forget that organizations are not only the brand but people.

Finally, when a candidate accepts an offer becomes a customer of your organization. Moreover, the candidate, now employee, becomes also a brand ambassador. Organizations need to be aware of this conversion process and need to work to optimize it.

A prospect who becomes an employee through the recruiting process needs to be treated as unique. Why? The professional can decide whether to become a customer of your brand or continuing to be one of your customers, to convince others that your business and your brand are exceptional, refer friends and spreading the word about your brand…. We know that the word of mouth is still the best form of marketing and proposition. What about the candidates who have not been selected? You need to value them and treat them as the ones that accepted your offers. These candidates can be selected in another process, make referrals, being your customers and brand ambassadors.

A different approach to the candidate experience is definitely needed.

This is not another post about time management!

Our behaviour at work is the result of the perceptions of the reality around us. For example,  the perceptions related to a particular work environment are different amongst the employees of the same organization. There are employees who find the work environment very enjoyable and other ones who hate it.

One important perception is the one related to “time”. Let’s start with a simple example. We usually feel that the time is flying while we’re doing something that we like. On the contrary, we have a completely different experience when we are part of something (task, project, activity) that does not stimulate us and/or does not boost our creativity. As a consequence,  it is difficult for a manager to interpret the individuals’ perception of time. Why? We interpret our roles/task/activities in a complete different ways.

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However, the managerial role is not tricky as for what I am going to describe now. Specifically, what is the perception of time with respect to success or failure?

Well, the whole thing becomes even more complicated and less generalizable than what said about the interesting (or not) tasks . The reaction towards the time spent to a complete an activity can be positive if you have completed something quickly; however, it can be perceived also positive if you have finally completed a task after a lot of time; why? you feel relieved.

 

Moreover, how much time we dedicate to the celebration of success or thinking about failures? Again, another perception and interpretation which depends on personality, attitude and also the work environment.

Yes. lt is very complicated. There are cases, such as in sales departments, where the achievements ( for example new deals) are celebrated. But, as the group celebrates, what is the achiever thinking? Is that celebration perceived as enough? Or is it needed more time for an individual (personal) self-reflection?  

Yes. It is complicated.  Your perception of the time is simply a fundamental dimension of your relationship with your job.

 

What’s the simplest thing to do for creating a collaborative team?

What’s the simplest thing to do for creating a collaborative team? I will tell you in a minute.

It happens often to read several articles about team building and collaboration; the fundamental elements which are usually presented as fundamental to create the “chemistry” are:trust, clear communication , clear goals and having an inspiring manager. In order to achieve this framework, organisations usually invest money for programs or specific initiatives. I imagine that it is happened to most of us to participate in offsites, social events or simple team meetings where your manager defines (or redefines) the team goals and/or the way of working.

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But, are these official occasions enough? Do they really create that needed chemistry? Probably they do, but not completely. The first reason is due to the fact that not all the organisations invest in this kind of initiatives . Secondly, even if they do,  there is a lack of continuous development which follows these events; in other words, there are not initiatives which follows the official event.
So, which is the simplest thing to do? Creating a culture of gratitude. Saying “thank you” when someone is working with you, saying “thanks” to your boss for the opportunities and supports are just few example. Recognition is fundamental in order to creating a good teamwork atmosphere and a needed collaboration…

Do you usually thanks people only when they have done something for you? Better to open up your horizon to create a better work framework.

Employer branding strategy: the reason why you should not lie!

As mentioned several times in this blog (for example here https://hrbreak.com/2015/08/30/are-you-a-brand-ambassador-and-recruiters/), presenting the “informal” image of a company is fundamental to having a good positioning into the job market.

Diapositiva1The company revenues, the job offer with its career’s plan, the compensation and benefits package are not enough to being perceived  as an employer of choice. One of the corporate goal is therefore presenting the working reality; in other words, it is needed a sort of storytelling process with the aim of reducing the distance between “public” and the company.

If your company’s Employer Value Proposition (EVP) is supported by the PR or marketing departments, this effort clearly allows you to work on the emotional side of the EVP; the risk is to exaggerate with an “honeymoon” presentation. In other words, your company should not confuse the employer branding with marketing driven initiatives; in fact, this kind of exaggeration with the aim of increasing the audience will play against the reality’s presentation. Another threatening mistake is related to the personal employer branding (https://hrbreak.com/2015/07/21/personal-and-employer-branding-on-social-media-how/). For the fact that organizations are social environments, creating too strict guidelines for the usage of social media will limit the potential of your EVP.

I’m not saying that companies do not need to keep an eye on confidential information ; but the social side must remain social, so shared… and then, here we are with the most basic rule for a correct employer branding: do not lie!

Are you a brand ambassador? And recruiters?

We often read blogs’ posts and articles that have branding as main focus. No, I’m not referring to employer branding but to the what so called “personal branding”. In short, personal branding is the process where a person is represented and represents a brand (in some cases you’d be officially called “brand ambassador”). The relationship between employees and brands has expanded its meaning and consequently its responsibilities. Your “personal branding shadow” (thanks to the presence of social media) it is not just confined to your personal network; actually, it could resonate louder and going beyond geographical boundaries.

Do you remember the time when someone explained you how to write a CV and what to include into the personal interest section? Here we are with the power of social media. Being a “brand ambassador” leads to give great importance to your hobbies and what you do in your spare time. The combination of your work, your social life and your hobbies creates your personal branding image. Some people have grown so much the personal part (personal interests) that have created their own job; think about the travel or fashion blogger (Youtubers situation is slightly different, but the result is very similar).

Now, what about recruiters? What about the brand ambassadors (at least, but not only) of the recruiting process? Thanks to Linkedin, we are all brand ambassadors (not only the recruiters) or at least we contribute to it. The boundary between personal and work life regarding the usage of social media is thinner for recruiters than other people. But is it only about employer and personal branding? I think that in the long run the scenario will be a bit different. Recruiters have their personal network and they enlarge it following and being followed by people who are interested in the brand they represent or simply the work for. So, when their network is enlarged, they become the perfect bridge between brands and prospects. Simply and (potentially) recruiters could eclipse the work of the placement agency. Again, being the “bridge” is true for everyone because everyone could be the brand ambassador; but for recruiters even more true: if you want to be in contact with a company the simplest way is contacting a recruiter. So, think about if you want, are or would like to be a brand ambassador… your company will be happy for that.

Personal and employer branding on social media… how?

Being present on social media is clearly not a new trend for companies and for who want to be a brand ambassador. There are companies or people that are doing better than others, but the common trend is the need of being part of this world full of opportunities. Let’s say that nowadays having a LinkedIn corporate page dramatically increases the opportunities to be followed as employer of choice; it is not only attempt to engage already interested professionals but also improve company’s positioning in the labor market in terms of employer’s awareness and appeal.

Diapositiva1As true for all strategies and action plans, there are companies which launch long-term or short term strategies. Regarding the second case, increasing postings and activities dramatically enhance your online presence (especially if it is the beginning of a social implementation) and which is your awareness. The real difference which defines the success or failure of online strategies it is determined exactly by this; when your first online “boom” is not supported by a constant engagement and a long term strategy, you will see the boom decreasing with time. Professionals who work in social media in advertising know how important is the community management for example; for the fact that we are moving more and more on the idea of ​​personal branding which supports official employer branding strategies, it happens that becoming a brand ambassador implies the improvement and implementation of a long-term strategy. Multiplying posts to being visible on Linkedin or social media it is an example of improving quantity (short term), but just because everyone does it, you must do something different to stand out, unique content and better than others (long term goal). Personalization of the content is just one of the central aspects of success. Another? Creativity

Why not having friends at work?

Many say that at work  you’d not have friends, because you’re in an area where you have to show your professionalism and remain detached.
When I hear these things, especially from people who work as human resources professionals even at high levels, it makes me really think: “Have I correctly heard? Really?. The funniest part is that then they usually say: “We must be a group and trust each others aiming to achieve our organizational goals” . Organizations’  success is clearly based on collaboration and will towards a common goal. Maybe when you read the “quote” above from surely will come to your mind a thought like: “but, is it not exactly the case of being friends?” You trust your friends,  you help them and often work together to achieve a goal.  Hypocrite HR professionals also add slogans like: ” for us, collaboration is core !!!  ” And then, why do not be friends even at work? . It will look even maybe bad to say, but for example when you need information or an explanation, probably you know the door of a trusted person .
Diapositiva1With what just described I’m not saying that your organization will run a holidays’ atmosphere or of  a leisure center; clearly, each professionals have to understand where her/his influence as a friend and colleague starts and finishes. If you have to say “NO” , it has to have same value for a friend or for a colleague; it is a matter of being fair and respectful. HRs instead of saying “you should not have friends”, should improve aggregation and collaboration, sponsoring events and occasions of networks’ building. There are also risks about friendships; firstly,  people could not be good in distinguishing two spheres (friends vs colleagues).  Second, there is the so-called mechanism of conformity; it is clear that people influence you and you are effected in some cases by their behaviors and attitudes; here it comes the role of HR  and managers to view and advise, thereby avoiding distortions of being friend at work. Being a manager, means giving also advices, not only ordersSolution in the case of “drift”? Occasionally do a reshuffle of teams and responsibilities, in order to balance again created status quo.