My previous office was straight out of Office Space -- a grey office of cubicles, key-cards, and strict scheduling, where the constant murmur of other voices drifted through to break up the silence. It was a big, prestigious company. At Staffing Advisors, everyone in our company works from home. There's no other option (by design) -- we don't even have a central office to report to.
My executive search firm recently interviewed Linda, a talented, articulate, very well qualified candidate with an excellent track record of career advancement. Her skills were an excellent match to our client’s needs. She kept up to date on the latest industry trends, attended training sessions, and updated her department processes to meet changing customer needs. She worked hard to stay at the forefront of her field.
Transparency is vital when discussing how you will compensate and reward top performers. But research shows that the majority of managers do not understand their own organization’s compensation philosophy. (And it’s pretty darn hard to transparently explain something you don’t understand yourself.) This was not a big problem until recently, because managers generally had access to better compensation information than job seekers, so they could wing it.
Those days will soon be over. Credible salary data was once the exclusive province of employers, who paid dearly for it. Now it is available to job seekers at a very reasonable cost.
"After nourishment, shelter and companionship, stories are the thing we need most in the world." -- Philip Pullman
Who doesn't love a good story? Whether it's a book, movie, Youtube video, or campfire tale, they fill a void that's difficult to explain. We frequently perform searches for communications professionals, those people who *gasp* majored in English or Communications, and fortunately for the organization, have the uncanny ability to distill a complex message down to its essence, and then brew it into something new and complex.
How many people do you know who have been with the same organization for 5 years? 10 years? I don't know if it's even possible to stay with one company your entire career anymore. If you're a top performer, employers obviously want you to stick around as long as possible. But the modern job market does not encourage us to stay on one company's payroll and climb rung-by-rung up a single organization's ladder. Developing your career is now more like climbing Everest in a blizzard. You can't necessarily see where you're going and you've made a few mistakes, but you made the ambitious choice to climb. You're going to keep climbing towards the summit because failure is not an option.
In a small organization, hiring gets in the way just when you’re trying to get something done. When you have your sights set on a new goal, you're excited and ready to get moving! But then an avalanche of complexity rains down on you. You have to stop and write up a job description in that stiff bureaucratic language loved only by lawyers. Then you need to get approval for the new job, budget for it by taking a wild guess at the salary (locking yourself into a salary before you have any idea what the good people actually cost). Next you have to write a job advertisement, think about how much you want to spend on the ad and think about where to post it. The whole business is uncomfortable, unfamiliar and extraordinarily time consuming.
Where do you think most job seekers begin their search for a new job? Most recruiters will tell you that candidates start by searching on the big job boards like Monster, Dice and CareerBuilder.