Sometimes the hiring manager does not know what they want

Posted by Bob Corlett on March 13, 2013

We were meeting to discuss the hiring specification before we started recruiting. The hiring manager was having a devil of a time trying to describe what he wanted. I could hear his mental gears grinding as he leaped from one vague platitude to another.

I kept asking for something more tangible and concrete, but he could only answer conceptually.

The hiring manager may have had a mental picture of who he wanted to hire, but simply could not put it into words. As we left the meeting, the HR executive pulled me aside to comment, "He’ll know it when he sees it. He just needs to see some candidates." The HR executive was right, the hiring manager became increasingly decisive and certain as the interviews progressed. The feedback on the first three interviews was tentative, but by the fourth interview he hit his stride.

Is this the most efficient way to recruit? Absolutely not.

Is this a very common way to handle recruiting? Yes, it’s far more common than most people realize.

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Topics: Hiring Managers, Recruiting On Your Own