Blogs

CBI Way: Thorough Intake Leads to Successful Sourcing Strategy

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Guest blog spot by Outside-In® Team Member Alex Patton

In the last CBI Way blog, we discussed improving sourcing efficiency by cutting out defects and weaknesses throughout the sourcing process. So where can your sourcing strategy go wrong? When do you start wasting your time? Let’s start from the beginning of the process; the intake call with the hiring manager.
Businessman Working Calculator Balance Financial Planning Paperwork Concept

Your intake call should be used to gather as much information as possible about the responsibilities and qualifications required for the role. The more questions you can ask the better. Ask why the job is open, what the target fill date is, and everything in between.

An overview of the position can lead you to more probing and specific questions about the desired candidate profile. Use this time with the hiring manager to fully understand what he or she is really looking for in a great candidate, which can often differ from the formal job description and and listed requirements.

Don’t be afraid to ask for the profile of someone who has been hired previously. The closer you can pin down the ideal profile before you begin sourcing, the better. Not only should you think about sourcing the right candidate during the inquisition, but also find out the best selling points for the position itself. These selling points will be important if you’re targeting passive candidates who need to be engaged or motivated to make a move.

Creating an effective sourcing strategy directly depends on the quality of your intake call with the hiring manager. Don’t take it lightly or breeze through it. Think critically, plan your questions, and reach back out after the intake if you feel something may have been missed. A thorough intake conversation will prime your sourcing strategy for success, and create a strong rapport with your hiring partner.

Top 10 Career Transition Questions: #4 Who do I ask for help during my career search?

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Blog post by Career Transition Coach, Greg Moore

This blog is part of a series addressing some of the most compelling questions for those that are beginning a career search. During the last 6 years, we have been asked hundreds of questions related to career transition and best practices. Here we are distilling those queries down to the 10 most critical need to know responses. Here is #4 of 10, discussing who to ask for help during your career search.

Who are my top 5 – 6 professional relationships and how can those individuals assist me in my search?

One of the first exercises one can perform when beginning a job search is to take stock of one’s “assets”. Those relationships with people who are in positions of power or influence can be extremely valuable to your job search. You are going to need some excellent strategists. These are the folks that you want on your “dream team” to assist you during your search. These should be people who are both capable and willing to help. Hopefully along the way you have made some positive impressions that will allow you to make these critical requests for support.

Start by making a list of almost everyone you know. Don’t parse it or vett it at this time. Just keep writing. This should be a long list of names maybe over one hundred deep. Then, go back through the list and score them all on two important criteria: How much power/influence do they have? How willing are they to help? Add these two scores and the people at the top might very well be your “dream team”. Give it some thought and try to select 5 or 6 people and reach out to them with a request for a coffee meeting and tell them you looking for advice. That is all you do at this time, ask for advice. If they seem willing to help and if you still believe they are capable, they are on the team.

Top 10 Career Transition Questions: #4 Who do I ask for help during my career search?

  by    0   0

Blog post by Career Transition Coach, Greg Moore

This blog is part of a series addressing some of the most compelling questions for those that are beginning a career search. During the last 6 years, we have been asked hundreds of questions related to career transition and best practices. Here we are distilling those queries down to the 10 most critical need to know responses. Here is #4 of 10, discussing who to ask for help during your career search.

Who are my top 5 – 6 professional relationships and how can those individuals assist me in my search?

One of the first exercises one can perform when beginning a job search is to take stock of one’s “assets”. Those relationships with people who are in positions of power or influence can be extremely valuable to your job search. You are going to need some excellent strategists. These are the folks that you want on your “dream team” to assist you during your search. These should be people who are both capable and willing to help. Hopefully along the way you have made some positive impressions that will allow you to make these critical requests for support.

Start by making a list of almost everyone you know. Don’t parse it or vett it at this time. Just keep writing. This should be a long list of names maybe over one hundred deep. Then, go back through the list and score them all on two important criteria: How much power/influence do they have? How willing are they to help? Add these two scores and the people at the top might very well be your “dream team”. Give it some thought and try to select 5 or 6 people and reach out to them with a request for a coffee meeting and tell them you looking for advice. That is all you do at this time, ask for advice. If they seem willing to help and if you still believe they are capable, they are on the team.

Cracking the On-site Interview Part II: Master the Interview Basics

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By Outside-In® Team Member Zach Werde

This blog is part of a 3-part series on Cracking the On-site Interview. This first part examined “the why” behind when you feel perfectly qualified for a role and extremely confident about your interview performance, but didn’t land the role. Part II introduces the best tips for mastering the interview basics.

After reading Part I: I’m Perfectly Qualified – Why didn’t I Get the Job?, you are probably wondering where is the good news? Or, if there is any good news at all. I am here to tell you that THERE IS! The good news is that even a seasoned professional can improve their interview skills and strategy, and in doing so can set them apart from candidates who are similar and maybe even start to advance them into the category of top-tier candidates, which the company may have initially preferred over them. The best interviewer in the world won’t be able to get every job (perhaps because of some of the reasons mentioned in Part I, but all other factors aside, interviewing better is going to increase your chances of getting a job. It’s a simple fact.

So, let’s address the Interview Basics. These are the givens if you are applying for a professional position:

– Arrive ten to fifteen minutes early (no more or less)
– Wear a full suit or professional dress (not an option, you must do this, even if the environment is casual)
– Bring 3 printed copies of your resume
– Carry your resumes and notepad in a professional binder
– Bring a professional pen (if you are applying for a professional position, a nice pen and binder (as opposed to a notebook and cheap pen) will make you look like a professional on a job interview and not a college student applying for an internship)
– Come prepared with questions (intelligent questions, don’t ask what time lunch is)
– Send a follow up thank you email (within 24 hours, preferably 12 hours)

Yes, these are the baby steps. After all, you have to walk before you can run. This is your interview bible, so to speak. If you aren’t doing these things, you need to slow down and master interview basics before you start working on higher level strategy. Once you’ve mastered these interview basics, you will be ready to take your interview skills to the next level. (Stay tuned for Part III!)

Quit this One Habit to Improve your Customer’s Experience

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There is the idea of “moments of truth” in service. This concept basically represents every time we interact with a customer that we have a moment to impress, do our best, or make the interaction either positive or negative.

In a restaurant, when your hostess or waiter doesn’t bring you your menu for 10 minutes, it is a negative thing – not a good moment of truth. When the waitress finally arrives at your table, s/he explains that s/he had just arrived and all the servers are transitioning shifts and juggling tables. Thanks, I think. This is an excuse. The words offer me no value, and it actually makes me feel even more frustrated. All I wanted was an apology and a chance to order. The comments made nothing better. I really don’t care about why.

Over years of study and real world application, “Burkhard leaders” have learned that making an excuse at any time in service with a customer, peer, boss, vendor or friend never adds value or improves the mistake. An excuse always makes things worse. No one wants to hear you give an excuse. We just want it fixed and done right. The excuse drags out the negative moment and in fact, adds another negative moment of truth. Instead, when you offer me a solution to fix whatever broke, you could win me over forever!

No excuses

Apply this thinking to your own world at work or in your home life. All day long someone makes an excuse on why you did not get a response to the email, why they did not attend your important meeting, or finish the project. Giving any excuse simply makes it worse, right? When your son does not clean up his room or do his assigned chore. Which is worse: the missed work or what he has to say about why it’s not done? Johnny came over and we got distracted. Or, I got my homework done instead. We don’t need all that from a teenager! If he understood “No Excuses”, he would simply go up stairs and clean his room and tell you when it was done. Nothing extra, nothing more. No excuses.

No Excuses is a core value of our companies. No Excuses is about how we act and react in moments of providing service. At the Outside-In® Companies, we try very hard when we make a mistake. Yes, we make them too! Our playbook is to fix what broke. Apologize. But never, ever make an excuse. When we do it well (offering a fix instead of an excuse), there is no drama to discuss, no flames to fan. It is simply matter of fact. Fixed. Done. Over. I like to think this is about running head first into the problem. Get it over with. But for goodness sakes, don’t try and over-explain the why.

Win over your customer by quitting the habit of making excuses. No Excuses means no drama. No Excuses means action. No Excuses means taking one on the chin and not feeling like you have to explain yourself away. All we want as customers is what we asked for. Nothing more.

Cracking the On-site Interview Part I: I’m Perfectly Qualified – Why didn’t I Get the Job?

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By Outside-In® Team Member Zach Werde

This blog is part of a 3-part series on Cracking the On-site Interview. This first part examines “the why” behind when you feel perfectly qualified for a role and extremely confident about your interview performance, but didn’t land the role.

We have all had this experience before. You arrive ten to fifteen minutes early to interview for a job that you are very qualified for. As a seasoned professional, you are wearing your best suit and toting several copies of your resume, a professional binder to write in, and a semi-professional pen to write with. (please, spend two or three dollars on a nice pen and leave the BIC® Round Stic® at home). After quickly building rapport with your hiring manager, you proceed to nail the interview. You are able to answer all of the questions asked of you, and you are met with visible approval and head-nodding.

Because you came prepared for your interview, you know that when it is over, you need to ask exceptional, insightful questions, and you do. As the interview concludes, the hiring manager shakes your hand firmly, thanks you for your time, and says that you will hear from them “soon”. But, you have done your homework, and you know that your work is not yet finished. Not until you send a thank you note to your interviewer. Later that evening when you get home, you take a half hour of your time and compose an insightful thank you note, which thanks your interviewer for his or her time and incorporates some personalization from the interview to reiterate why you are interested and qualified for the role.

Then, what happens? NOTHING! Three days go by, so you send a follow up email to your interviewer and you are met with no response. Finally, a week goes by, and you get the dreaded email that you have seen all too many times. “We regret to inform you that at this time we have elected to move forward with other candidates who are better suited for this opportunity…” What happened?? You were perfectly qualified for the role, you nailed the interview, you did EVERYTHING right! And yet you are right back where you started, with a resume in your hand and nothing but pending applications to sleep on.

BUT WHY? HOW CAN THIS BE? Let’s break it down. Hopefully these notes make you feel at least a little better. Or at least more confident that you didn’t do anything wrong. When you feel perfectly qualified for a role and extremely confident about your interview performance, but didn’t land the role – any of the following could be the reasons why.

First let me share that no matter how qualified you are, there can always be someone “more” qualified. Even if you have worked in a comparable position for the last ten years, there may always be someone else who has similar experience but a higher degree. Or more relevant industry experience. Or a certification that you don’t have.

Second, even if you are the most qualified candidate and you interview well, that is sadly no guarantee of getting the position. The employer’s bureaucracy may dictate that an internal applicant gets the position. Sometimes the position was created to replace an employee who decided to leave but that person changes their mind and decides to stay. So the position goes away. Sometimes the company has a bad quarter and goes on a budget freeze. Again, the position just goes away. Perhaps, the budget doesn’t freeze, but it is tight, and they elect to go with a candidate who has less experience, and ergo requires a lower salary. Or, the hiring manager already knows another applicant and they decide to go with someone they already know and trust. The point is, there are literally dozens and dozens of reasons why an interview can go well and you still end up without an offer. And many of the reasons may be out of your control.

So is there any hope for me? Stay tuned for Part II of this 3-part blog series on cracking the on-site interview.