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Posts Tagged ‘Recruitment

I wrote the article below in 2012 and it is just as true today as it was then. It never ceases to amaze me when I read articles about interviewers who think it is cool to ask “junior shrink” questions. I wonder if anyone at their company is tracking results of these types of questions and subsequent hires. We all know how expense just one bad hire can be to a company. In fact, the higher the position the more expense the cost which is why a structured performance based interview is a far better strategy. Enjoy

Are you a Junior Shrink Interviewer? By Lee Koren, PHR

Today I was helping a young lady with her job search. We discussed the typical things – Resume, Job Search and Interview Strategies. She told me about an interview she recently attended wherein the interviewer asked “If you could be a fruit, what type of fruit would you be”. Hmm, I’m surprised these questions are still being asked in interviews. I immediately asked her if the interviewer disclosed herself as a doctor (psychologist or psychiatrist) – she said no – but could not confirm that the interviewer did not hold this distinguished designation. Then I asked her if the interview was with Apple – I mean maybe the interviewer was looking for “apple” as a good faith answer – a little interview humour? However, the company was not Apple.

Ok so here I go – up on my soap box. What in the world does “fruit” have to do with getting a job as a customer service rep? I’d like to see that job description – really how do you incorporate “fruit” into the job requirements? Let’s see – “Must love all fruits” or “Only fruit lovers will be considered” Or “Must be able to deal with all kinds of fruits” – I mean really!!!!

Unless the interviewer is a bona fide psychologist or psychiatrist and knows how to decipher the answer then he/she has no business asking this type of question. These questions, asked by inexperienced interviewers. almost always lead to subjective and bias decisions without any measureable evidence to back up the decision. Think about it – my response might be “peach” – when I’m asked “why a peach” I say” because I like peaches” – little do I know that the interviewer dislikes peaches – or maybe he/she is allergic to peaches – there’s one subjective strike against me.

If you are asking junior shrink questions in the interview try replacing it with a behavioural interview question? It is much better to identify the skills and competencies required to perform the job and develop behavioural/performance based questions to help you evaluate each candidate consistently – so much more objective.

Remember, poor hiring decisions are very costly; and questions about what type of fruit, colour or dog a person prefers will end up costing your company in more ways than one.

Lee Koren is a Human Resource Professional with extensive international experience. She is certified as a Professional in Human Resources (PHR) by the Society for Human Resource Management and a Master Trainer in Behavioural Interviewing. Lee possesses over 25 years of experience in selection and recruitment. She has recruited and hired thousands of resources for large global corporations.

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Over the past several years there has been a lot of buzz going around about “Meaningful Work”. Companies are incorporating the phrase into their recruitment and performance management strategies stating “We offer a meaningful work environment”. However, most of the time it is exactly as it seems a catch phrase to help recruit or retain talent. Most companies do not have a clue what it takes to establish a meaningful work environment.

In my opinion, this type of work environment would see each and every employee bring a sense of passion, creativity and meaning to the workplace every day because they feel and see on a personal level that it makes a difference. How? Because management is continuously recognizing, rewarding and celebrating the successes of its employees no matter how large or small.

A couple of years ago I was introduced to a company which stated it offered a meaningful work environment. Senior management was running around giving “lip service” to providing meaningful work” and the majority of the employees were scratching their heads wondering what is so meaningful about this work? Actually, the company did have a good foundation – the problem was too many antiquated managers ingrained in an “old style” of management. Hence if a company is committed in creating a cohesive meaningful work environment it must start with its management to insure each and every one is a leader capable of inspiring employees to bring their best to work every day.

The organization is responsible for creating a meaningful workplace where each and every employee is a part of and contributes to its success. You got it, a cohesive culture continually fostered by the organization. Hmm sounds a little like human resource management – what a concept!

The only way a company can honestly say they offer a meaningful work environment is if each and every employee buys in and understands the concept. Herein is the challenge – each and every employee not just the “superstars” or those deemed to “have potential” but all employees even those who are struggling. All too often struggling employees are mislabelled as underperforming or “poor performers”. It just might be that the employee is under-challenged, and finds the work boring subsequently showing up for work every day becomes a chore. On the other hand maybe the employee finds the work too complicated and does not feel he/she is getting adequate training. In a true meaningful work environment struggling employees become the priority and it is up to management to help inspire the desire to bring their best to work every day.

Let me know what you think – does your company do a good job of offering all its employees meaningful work?

Lee Koren is certified as a Professional in Human Resources (PHR). She is an expert in career transition management, recruitment and selection.

I just read this article written by Erin Carson – it has some very good pointers if one is in the market for a video resume. Most of you know I sit on the fence when it comes to a video resume – why? Well because it usually does more harm than good. People are only human and tend to be subjective which leads to unfounded and non-supported biases. However, as Erin states, a video resume may make sense if done in the right setting with the proper equipment within an industry which requires strong presentation skills – Enjoy!

http://www.techrepublic.com/article/video-resumes-the-dos-and-donts/

Lee Koren is certified as a Professional in Human Resources (PHR) and Master Trainer in Behavioural Interviewing. Her core competencies are Recruitment, Selection and Career Transition.

As an Employment Consultant working for a very reputable employment service it has become apparent that Individuals with disabilities are having a hard time getting employment. Why, because employers have a false perception, they think a person with a disability might get hurt on the job, not be able to perform effectively or may not be reliable. However, the complete opposite is true. It has been proven that an individual with a disability is reliable, punctual and efficient on the job because they want to work and feel a sense of accomplishment.

I read a success story by Mark Wafer who is an owner of 7 Tim Horton’s Franchises. Having a disability himself as a young boy and facing his share of barriers growing up Mark is an advocate and a role model for individuals with disabilities. According to Mark “16% of the Canadian population is disabled—the equivalent of the entire populations of Alberta, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan—and 70% of those are unemployed. People with disabilities want to work. Many employers think people with disabilities are going to get hurt on the job or not work diligently. This is simply not true.” Mark goes on to say “As employers we have never had a WSIB claim on any of our disabled employees, and while the average tenure for most of my employees is 1.3 years, it is seven years for my employees with a disability. Educating employers on those benefits is the most important thing that we can do.”

There is a lot of info out there on the internet about Canadians with Disabilities; however I found quite a bit of it to be outdated. I read about the 2014 Action Plan by the Conservative Government to provide 15 Million dollars over the next 3 years to the Canadian Association for Community Living (CACL) – it is being called the Ready, Willing and Able initiative to help people with disabilities get sustainable employment. This is awesome news and I do pray the other government parties throw their support behind this program. This is a real problem and without support from the government and education for employers it will only get worse.

Over the past several months, I have been promoting individuals with disability to Oakville employers alas without success. I`m here to say there is nothing to fear but fear itself and I just know there are Oakville employers out there who are not afraid to hire an individual with a disability. Employers who realize with reasonable accommodations and adequate training it can be a very positive experience on both sides.

I am on a mission to help the individuals with disability current registered in our program find gainful employment. It is not an easy challenge as most of the individuals live in Oakville, do not drive and rely on public transportation. So I am searching for inclusive employers in Oakville. Employers who realize hiring an individual with a disability affects their bottom line in a positive way and yes, their establishment is on a bus route. So step up, reach out and get ready to reap the benefits of hiring an individual with a disability.

Lee Koren is certified as a Professional in Human Resources (PHR). She has over 30 years as an International Recruiter and was instrumental in helping Americans with Disabilities receive gainful employment. Lee is a Master Trainer in behavioural interviewing – an objective interview structure which helps eliminate the biases and self-fulfilling prophecies during the interview.

I just read an article from the Harvard Business Review about why top talent is in a nonstop job hunt and I say “right on” – this is not a new scenario. Most companies do not have a strong talent management programs to help retain talented employees. This article hits the nail right on the head – unless companies are recognizing and developing their talent, there will be turnover and they will lose high potentials which will affect buisness.  Take a look at one of my earlier Blogs “Does your Talent Management Program Drive Business Performance?” – yep it is all above talented people – hiring and retaining. The economy is turning the corner and there are more opportunities available so if your company believes “talented people drive business performance” then it is time to take action!

Enjoy this article written by Monika Hamon, Jie Cao and Burak Koyunca http://bit.ly/LALXeh

Lee Koren is certified as a Professional in Human Ressources (PHR) and a Master Trainer in behavioural interviewing.  Her passion and expertise are recruitment and talent acquisition.

To all my fellow Blog writers and readers I wish to extend a happy holiday season greeting.  I hope 2011 was good to you and that 2012 is even better. 

I will be back next year with tips for individuals who are in career transition; and of course tips for corporations about recruiting and selecting the very best talent. 

It is no secret that good people drive business performance yet most companies do not have a selection strategy.   Yep, it is still tough out there and if the hiring process is not done correctly it is definitely costly.  Given the economic situation can your corporation afford the cost?

 Until next year………………….

Lee Koren, PHR

I know there are companies out there promoting Video Bios and Interviews; yep they want a piece of the action.  However before you leap, please consider a few facts.

  1. Technology cannot change the way a person thinks and unfortunately humans still have biases and make subjective decisions on what they see.
  2. Would you really want to be disqualified from an invite to interview on company site just because you wore a red tie during your video?  I know it might be an exaggeration, however you get the message.

If done properly, the Resume is still the best vehicle to get you in the door.    I have helped many people optimize their resume base on key strengths, competencies and accomplishments.  I read somewhere that an employer makes an impression in the first 5 minutes of the interview, do you really want that first impression to be via video?  At least, if you are face to face or even over the telephone you still have some control.      An alternative may be to create an audio interview highlighting key competencies and strengths as you talk through the resume

I am still very cautious about promoting job seekers to spend money on creating a Video Bio or Interview.   Now I will agree there may be folks out there who are good in front of the camera and a video may make sense if the job requires someone to be in front of the camera or involved in presentations in front of large audiences.  However, until technology can take the bias out of the video bio and/or interview my preference is still the good old fashion face to face interview. 

Lee Koren is a certified as a Professional in Human Resources (PHR) specializing in selection and recruitment.


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