The dreaded candidate black hole

It’s really hard to believe that many hiring managers and recruiters still don’t get it. That it’s a courtesy to inform applicants and candidates, who have been interviewed, that unfortunately another candidate was chosen for the job.

I love this line in the story that I quote below, that only one person can land a specific job, but everybody can have a good experience for the duration of the recruitment journey, even if they’re not ultimately the chosen candidate.

Here’s what you say on the phone or you write in the email: Continue reading “The dreaded candidate black hole”

40% of executive searches fail; clients to blame for most of them

Are you surprised? The research from ESIX says that 40% of executive searches fail and that the clients are to blame for 70% of these failures. What is your own experience with contingent recruiters and executive search consulting firms?

I have helped organisations to fill managerial and top executive positions in Thailand for the past 14 years. I see a clear pattern when clients are successful in their hiring, and likewise I notice when companies struggle to recruit. Some examples of what works for the successful client companies: Continue reading “40% of executive searches fail; clients to blame for most of them”

Headhunters don’t take the rap for clients’ behaviour

If you want to know how to jerk the headhunter around, how to make recruiters hate you, how to toy with them and lie to them. Or how you lead them to believe one thing while meaning another, promise them something when you really have no intention of keeping your word. The following will tell it all.

There are certainly moments where I think that clients, be it HR people, corporate recruiters, or line managers, have conspired to make our lives miserable. “Our lives” as in those of us who make a living from helping client companies identify the increasingly difficult-to-find talent. Continue reading “Headhunters don’t take the rap for clients’ behaviour”

Should I trust my gut feeling when interviewing people?

The short answer is no and never! If you want to know why, please keep reading. Using your gut is similar to scratching the surface of something; to examine and discover only the superficial aspects of something or in this case a candidate. We call it the Four A Syndrome, because when you trust your gut, you are assessing a candidate’s presentation skills over business performance and substance. Continue reading “Should I trust my gut feeling when interviewing people?”

Five reasons why slow hiring process kills all deals

Last week I got a message from a senior executive candidate, who is in the running of becoming the new Managing Director for a multi-national company. He said he was pulling out of the hiring process. He and other top candidates met the client five weeks ago and to date no decision or update have been forthcoming.

There is no way you will impress senior executives with a slow recruitment process. Period. Continue reading “Five reasons why slow hiring process kills all deals”

Two ways to test candidate personality and intelligence before you hire

Picture a jigsaw puzzle! Then think about the next candidate you are going to interview. This candidate is like the jigsaw puzzle you just pictured, a human being put together by many different shapes and forms of puzzle pieces.

Imagine for a second that you only have one single puzzle piece and are asked to guess what the complete picture is. Likely an impossible task, wouldn’t you say?

Assessing a candidate’s profile to determine the fit to your hiring needs is not done by just reading a resume once. It’s not done by just one telephone screening and nothing else. It’s not done by a short or one-time in-person interview. It would certainly be a risk to decide whether to hire, or not, if the only thing you did was call a previous employer for a reference check. Continue reading “Two ways to test candidate personality and intelligence before you hire”

Why headhunters don’t return your calls

If you missed the Bangkok Post article on 19 June 2017, Why Headhunters Don’t Return Your Calls, read the full article here. It’s the story why I used to hate headhunters…

Once upon a time is the phrase which begins fairy tales and fabulous stories set in some unspecified moment in the past. Except the story you are about to read. There is nothing fairy or fabulous about this real life experience of mine. I absolutely hated headhunters. My story starts like this: Once upon a time when I was a candidate myself. Continue reading “Why headhunters don’t return your calls”

Forbes ranks Boyden in Top Ten in executive search

Forbes recently launched their first ever ranking of executive recruiting firms. Boyden has ranked #8 out of the 250 firms included in the set.

To assign rankings, Forbes gathered 20,000 responses from executives and HR managers. Forbes asked them to name the top firms with which they had experience. The companies with the most recommendations are ranked highest. Continue reading “Forbes ranks Boyden in Top Ten in executive search”

Secrets of successful selection

There are now about 300 third-party recruiters in Thailand who are licenced to help recruit Thais for jobs in Thailand. Not many know this, but the recruitment industry in Thailand is extremely regulated and is governed by the Job Seekers Protection Act enacted in 1985 (31 years ago). Recruitment companies must submit a monthly report to the Ministry of Labour showing the names and details of the candidates they have helped place with their clients.

Tom Sorensen is a 14-year veteran head-hunter in Thailand, now at Boyden, one of the longest established players in the executive recruitment business. In the world and in Thailand. We asked Tom Sorensen to discuss the changing face of recruitment and the role of recruitment professionals. Continue reading “Secrets of successful selection”

Two easy ways to test candidate personality and intelligence

Picture a jigsaw puzzle! Then think about the next candidate you are going to interview. This candidate is like the jigsaw puzzle you just pictured, a human being put together by many different shapes and forms of puzzle pieces.

Imagine for a second that you only have one single puzzle piece and are asked to guess what the complete picture is. Likely an impossible task, wouldn’t you say? Continue reading “Two easy ways to test candidate personality and intelligence”

What fee do you pay recruitment firms, 3 or 4 months’ salary?

Your third-party recruitment company, or executive search firm calculate their service fee as a percentage of the successful candidate’s first year’s annual income.

But what is the percentage and what does annual income mean?7013_dollar_stack_colorLow_resize

The percentage will typically vary from, and be anywhere in between, 15% and 35% and even up to 40%. A standard definition of annual income is the total of the gross salary per month before tax multiplied by thirteen months plus other monetary benefits such as fixed allowances times twelve (e.g. transport, mobile phone, housing). The thirteenth month represents any fixed and variable bonuses no matter how many months a client ends up paying. Continue reading “What fee do you pay recruitment firms, 3 or 4 months’ salary?”

10 things candidates will hate you for doing

This message is not for you if applicants and candidates are queueing up outside your office every day looking for job opportunities, and you have absolutely no problem in finding and hiring people. Google, Apple and Starbucks come to mind.3401_Production_line_Low_res

Your corporate brand and value proposition may be so unique and spectacular that applicants will be on their knees begging for a job. At that very moment, they will take any abuse and arrogance just to get in the door.

If you recognise yourself and your company in the lines above, you may stop reading now; better check in with me next month. Continue reading “10 things candidates will hate you for doing”

Is Interim Executive a job for you?

This is now a career choice for many. Perhaps it’s something for you?

1169_athlete_winning_colourThe interim executive is a highly skilled, seasoned manager who is available for assignments of any duration, to either lend specialised expertise to a strategic project or to fill a critical skills gap.

Interim or contract roles tend to be for a set period of time, typically several months, and tend to be more for experienced professionals with niche skills who have to hit the ground running.

Interim executives are also known as fixed-term-contract-employees. They are employed by our clients in much the same way as permanent staff but for a fixed period only. Continue reading “Is Interim Executive a job for you?”

When a candidate scolds a recruiter

You be the judge. A candidate forwarded me this email sent to a recruitment company where she was interviewed recently. She is well aware of my frank and candid opinion of those third party and in-house recruiters who still to this day have an air of arrogance in the way they treat applicants and candidates.7810_mailbox_blackLow

I have not heard from you for a few weeks since the last time we talked. I am wondering what the status of my candidacy is. I assume that you are either super busy or my candidacy is not making it to the next step.

However, I expect a big professional recruitment firm has the courtesy to send at least an e-mail to the candidates who didn’t make it to the shortlist.
Continue reading “When a candidate scolds a recruiter”

Love at first sight in recruitment

Why is it such a surprise that many employee and employer relationships end in what I call “recruitment divorce’: Employee Leaves Employer.8645_Fire extinguisher_70dpi

It is said that 50% (or more) of marriages end in divorce. That’s a scary prospect that makes many think hard before proposing or walking down the aisle.

Love at first sight during the interview process often turns sour because the assessment was artificial and the employer fell for the candidate’s well-practiced dance.

Too many get duped into assessing presentation over performance. You have just been outmaneuvered by a candidate who had prepared better than you. Basically, you have fallen victim to the 4A syndrome. Continue reading “Love at first sight in recruitment”