Skip to content

How to Prepare Your Employees for a Merger and Acquisition

how to prepare your employees for a merger and acquisition

As part of a management team, it’s your job to prepare your staff for any eventuality. This post is designed to assist you with one of the most difficult of these eventualities– the reality of a merger or acquisition happening to your company. Although it can be a challenging task, there are proven ways to navigate the difficult transition involved in a merger and acquisition scenario.

Mergers and acquisitions have been part of corporate culture for decades, but that doesn’t make them any easier for people to handle when they actually happen. Your staff will almost certainly react very strongly once the news of the merger or acquisition breaks. Here are a few of the best ways to prepare your people for a merger and acquisition.

General Guidelines

First, here are 5 general guidelines for helping your staff during the merger and acquisition process:

  1. Expect emotional reactions and be prepared to listen patiently to everyone’s concerns.
  2. Except a lot of resistance, especially to anything that seems vastly different than what your people are used to.
  3. Stay as positive and reassuring as you can realistically be.
  4. Focus on the short and long term future by describing the roadmap management has drawn for your staff’s individual and group success.
  5. Be transparent and fair when it comes to establishing criteria and deciding on any cuts or promotions.

Open Communication– The Message and How To Deliver It

Good communication becomes vital the moment that the merger or acquisition becomes a certainty. Rumors about lost jobs, demotions, and a host of other sweeping changes will start to fly immediately, so get out in front of any false information by communicating as openly as honestly as you can.

Remember that you’re delivering an important and sometimes frightening message when a merger or acquisition starts happening. That means you’ll have to manage this message well, both its content and the way it’s delivered. Work with your other managers to present a unified front regarding the details of the transition.

Decide as a group what, when, and how you’re going to tell your staff about the merger or acquisition. It’s especially important that everyone receives the information at the same time and in the same forum. Morale will be bad enough without managers pulling friends aside and whispering this or that advance info into their ear.

Hold a Staff Meeting as Soon as Possible

The best way to communicate information about the transition openly is to hold a meeting as soon as possible. Make it a Townhall style meeting, one where everyone can ask questions comfortably. Answer these questions as openly and honestly as you can during the session, making it clear that their concerns matter to you.

You can also use this time to discuss the criteria you will be using to make important personnel decisions during the merger or acquisition. This includes any possible firings, promotions, or changes in role. Your staff will know that some key changes are probably in the works, but they deserve to know in advance how their future with the company is going to be assessed.

Handling the Fallout

Lastly, let’s have a look at how to handle some of the fallout that can ensue after a merger or acquisition.

Unfortunately, lost jobs are sometimes inevitable during the merger or acquisition process, especially in departments where overlaps and redundancies clearly exist. If you’re forced to let staff members go, it’s best if the cuts occur during as brief a period as possible. Inform each employee personally if they’re being let go, and take this time to offer any outplacement or counseling services your company has prepared for them.

Let your people know when this dismal period is over. That way, the rest of your staff can breathe a sigh of relief and start focusing on the future. Arrange meetings with your various departments, where remaining ask whatever questions they might have and management can begin to clarify roles and its blueprint for the future.

Mergers and acquisitions are always a formidable challenge, but yours will go much more smoothly if you get started on these preparations right away.

22 Jun 2017

4 Ways to Keep Your Team Motivated When an Employee Leaves

4 Ways to Keep Your Team Motivated When an Employee Leaves

No matter what the circumstances are, personnel changes are bound to happen. Employees leave for a variety of reasons, sometimes for better positions and sometimes because of poor performance or behavior issues. Either way, employee departures can have a profound effect on the rest of your team and it’s part of a manager’s job to keep everyone motivated when it happens.

Losing a staff member can be difficult enough all by itself, especially if they were a high performer, a long-term employee, or one your team’s de facto leaders. The last thing you want is for things to get worse because of decreased motivation. Fortunately, there are some tried and true methods to keep your people happy and productive in this sort of situation.

Here are 4 effective ways to keep your team motivated when an employee leaves.

Keep Everyone in the Loop as Much as Possible

People like to be included, especially in a situation they think might have an eventual effect on their job situation. That’s why one of the best things you can do when a team member leaves is to keep the rest of your staff in the loop. This sort of news tends to travel around the office pretty quickly anyway, so apprise them of the situation as quickly as possible to avoid confusion and keep unnecessary rumors from flying around.

We’re going to focus on reassuring the rest of your staff in a moment, but the first step toward this goal is being as transparent with your staff as possible. No one can feel secure if they sense that you’re being secretive or withholding, so be as open as you can without violating office policies or confidentiality principles.

Stay Upbeat and Positive

A big part of keeping your team motivated is employee morale, so make sure to stay upbeat and positive whenever a member of your staff leaves. Whether the departing person was a top performer or the weakest link in your chain, your team needs you to stay energized and optimistic at a time like this. Once you’ve told them everything that you can about the situation, re-emphasize your team’s goals and outline all of the ways you can still reach them.

Be Compassionate and Reassuring

Losing a team member for whatever reason can be scary for a lot of people, so make sure you’re compassionate about what they might be feeling when someone leaves. Some of your staff might have become close to the person that left, so acknowledge the feelings of loss they might be experiencing and remind them that they and their friend will continue to thrive.

The loss of a team member can also make people feel insecure about the future of their jobs. That’s why it’s crucial that you reassure them this particular move has nothing to do with them. If any staff members seem especially distressed, meet with them in person and listen to their concerns. Remind them privately that every staff member is evaluated on their own merits, not in relation to something else that might have happened.

Get Back to Work as Quickly as Possible

Losing a team member can be a damaging break in continuity even in the best scenarios, so don’t let your staff dwell on the loss any longer than necessary. Return to business as usual as soon as you can to keep up both morale and productivity. Of course, this doesn’t mean you should be insensitive or uncaring. In fact, you should get back to work as quickly as possible for the opposite reason– because it’s the best way to move on and return to a sense of normalcy.

Handling the loss of an employee is never easy, but keeping people motivated when someone leaves is the true test of a good manager. If you manage the loss with sensitivity and wisdom, your team won’t need to miss a step.


8 Jun 2017

5 Welcomed Ways to Follow Up with the Recruiter

5 Welcomed Ways to Follow Up with the Recruiter

Congratulations, you scored an interview! For many job seekers, this is no easy feat. And waiting for the results of that interview can prove just as nerve wracking as the interview itself.

You might think that following up with the recruiter after the interview is a good way to demonstrate your interest in the job and show your readiness to accept. But when should you follow up, and how? How often should you check in? What should you say?

In fact, some recruiters would prefer you didn’t follow up at all, opting for a more “we’ll call you” approach. This is understandable, as recruiters who truly see an interest in you will somehow cue you in and not make you wonder.

But if you feel the itch to follow-up on your formal Q&A, here are five safe ways to do so without completely wrecking your chances:

#1 – Ask the recruiter how they prefer you follow up about the job.

Some recruiters will tell you they will call you if interested. Others might tell you to wait a couple weeks. Whatever their answer, make sure you respect their personal boundaries. Following up outside of their recommendations demonstrates your inability to listen, which won’t bode well for your future employment chances.

#2 – Send a Thank You email the day of your interview at the end of the work day.

Chances are, you were not the only person the recruiter interviewed that day. Sending a Thank You email on the same day serves two purposes:

  • It makes another impression associated with your name
  • It shows you are still interested in the job

Make sure you include something of significance from your interview in the email to help them remember you. It could be something unique you talked about, like an accomplishment or goal, or anything that will help them recall their interview with you.

#3 – Email, don’t call.

If a recruiter isn’t interested in you, it puts them in an awkward position to tell you directly why they haven’t reached out after the interview. Instead, you can save yourself and interviewer some embarrassment by keeping your follow-up in email format only.

#4 – Keep the follow-up casual, yet professional.

You want to seem warm, friendly, and approachable, but getting overly excited or too personal with the interviewer isn’t the way to do it. Remember, you haven’t been hired yet, so you still have to maintain a level of professionalism. However, you might avoid highly formal language in your follow-up, depending on the position.

In addition, you don’t want to come across as desperate or overly eager. These signals could send the wrong message to the recruiter and hurt your chances.

#5 – Keep the follow-up brief.

You don’t need to rehash your entire interview, nor do you need to resell your reasoning on why you’d make the perfect candidate. This was all covered in the interview, and trying to reiterate your already-known skills could make you seem desperate. Instead, keep your follow-up simple and to the point.

All you need is a greeting, the notice that you are following up on your interview, a thanks for their consideration, and your name.


Checking in after an interview can make you sound ambitious, but following up after an interview in the wrong ways can also make you seem pushy and overzealous, neither of which will help your chances in landing the job.

It’s best to hear straight from the recruiter how they prefer you to follow up, if at all. But if you can follow up, then, by all means, you should.

25 May 2017

How to Introduce Flex Hours Into Your Organization

How to Introduce Flex Hours Into Your Organization

Shedding the traditional 9-5, 40-hour work week is becoming more common as businesses struggle to find better ways to keep and attract talent. In fact, over 80% of businesses offer some form of flexible work arrangements, be it working remotely, flexible start and end times, or reduced work hours. Other studies suggest that a flexible work schedule ranks as the most important perk a company can offer.

Introducing flex hours into your organization can provide a multitude of benefits for both employees and the company. Flex hours promote a healthier work/life balance, can boost worker productivity, and can help manage stress and burnout. But those benefits won’t manifest themselves unless you implement flex hours the right way.

4 Tips for Introducing Flex Hours Into Your Company Culture Successfully

#1 – Determine which positions are conducive to flex hours.

Flex hours might not make sense for every job in your company, especially those in customer-facing roles. It’s up to you to decide which positions will make sense for a flex schedule.

Consider the various roles in your company, and decide if a particular start or end time is crucial for each one. For instance, if you offer tech support via phone or chat between certain hours, you need to ensure you are adequately staffed throughout that time frame to serve your callers.

#2 – Announce your plan to introduce flex hours, and collect employee feedback.

Offering flex hours, or any other perk, to employees means understanding how they stand to benefit from it. You can’t follow other companies’ examples simply because it works for them. Your people and business needs are unique, so your flex time program should serve to bolster those needs.

Talk to employees in different job titles and seniority ranks within the company to get a well-rounded idea of how flex hours will benefit different people. Ask for their input on how the program might best fit their individual needs.

#3 – Help managers to understand the benefits of flex time.

Even a hint of change in the work environment can prove enough to send managers into panic mode.  And for good reason – managers need to know how to explain these changes to their team, how it affects operations, and ways they can plan for upcoming changes.

You can help conquer this fear of the unknown by presenting managers with the benefits behind flex hours. Give them the chance to ask questions on how it will impact the daily workflow. Introducing change directly (and before it happens) can help settle nerves and open minds, both of which can lead to a better chance of program success.

#4 – Make flex time a formal company policy.

While some companies leave it up to the employee to determine their start and end times in a flex hour setting, you could greatly benefit by structuring a formal company policy around the program. Put your flex time policy details into writing, and ensure each employee understands any boundaries you’ve set forth.

One idea is to give your employees a general time range to start and end each work day, with the understanding that those who come in later should also stay later. Another suggestion is to let employees work up to a certain number of hours per week however it’s most convenient for them.

Whatever you decide, keep in mind that flex time should be just that – flexible.

One Final Thought on a Flex Hours Program

Adopting a flex hours program doesn’t necessarily mean your company will benefit like others have. It’s important you make periodic check-ins with managers and employees to get feedback on how they feel the program is working. They might be able to offer insight into problems you didn’t initially consider, which could help in restructuring the program to make it a better option for everyone involved.

11 May 2017

8 Signs Your Ideal Candidate is Going to Accept Your Job Offer

8 Signs Your Ideal Candidate is Going to Accept Your Job Offer

It’s not easy finding the people to recruit to your team, and even when you do find a perfect match, that doesn’t mean they will accept your job offer.

These 8 signs could signal your ideal candidate is going to accept your job offer before you even make it:

They follow up.

If a candidate takes initiative to follow up after the interview, they want to make sure their name stays name top of mind. This is possibly the biggest sign that when you’re ready to extend an offer, they’ll accept wholeheartedly.

They ask questions.

Some candidates decide during the interview that this probably isn’t the job for them, but they won’t alway say so. But the ones who are genuinely interested tend to ask deeper questions to get a true feel for what they will be doing if hired. These questions might be around daily activities, company culture, who they would be working with, etc. If they are satisfied with the answers you give them, you’ve pulled their interest in even more.

They aren’t considering any other offers.

It’s crucial to discover during the interview where the candidate is in their job search, and if the candidate is interviewing at other companies. Make this question a standard in your interview. If they might have other potential job offers coming in, you don’t want to wait too long to make your own offer.

They fit your cultural profile – and they know it.

One of the biggest reasons for job turndown is because the candidate doesn’t see how they will fit in with the company culture. You should take the time to talk about the type of work environment you foster, as well as get a feel for the type of environment your candidate is comfortable with. If you think there’s a match, let the candidate know how you think they will fit it.

You eliminated stumbling blocks that may cause hesitation.

Work-life balance, PTO, future earnings potential, advancement opportunities – there’s a lot that can cause hesitation when it comes down to accepting a job offer. Candidates want to make the right decision every bit as much as you do, and consider a lot of factors before making up their mind. You should try to elicit as many things that might cause them to balk, then try to see what workarounds exist that can set their minds at ease.

You both nailed the salary question.

Going into any interview, the starting salary is often a top concern for both the candidates and recruiters. Candidates want to know if the job offers more, less, or about the same as what they currently make. Recruiters want to know if they can afford the candidate. If their salary expectations line up with what your company is prepared to offer, this eliminates one of the biggest causes of job rejection.

You did your part in selling the job.

While candidates are selling themselves during an interview, you should be actively selling the position and telling the candidate why they should accept your offer if you make one. Tell them what makes your company remarkable, why employees love to work there, and the opportunities the company can provide to its staff. If you’ve done your part at presenting a strong case for your company, the candidate could be more inclined to joining the team if asked.

They leave the interview pumped up.

Candidates who exit the interview with a smile (and a little more energy) are likely to want the position. They’re excited to call their loved ones and tell them how it went. This confidence means they might be more surprised if they didn’t get the job.

27 Apr 2017

This Might Be Why Your Best Talent Leaves (Hint: It’s Not Always What You Think)

This Might Be Why Your Best Talent Leaves

Even the best companies see employees leave on their own wishes, but when those people happen to be some of your top performers, you look at the situation a little differently. When that happens, you start wondering what motivated them to quit, and if there was anything you could have done to make them stay.

Those are valid questions, but they aren’t so easily answered – for you or the employee. If a person is truly among your best talent, that probably means their position with your company is solid. And a sure thing is never easy to leave.

The best employees will typically give you the courtesy of a two-week notice (they didn’t get to the top by being unprofessional, did they?), but if that notice is accompanied by a half-hearted or non-negotiable excuse, it could indicate they aren’t disclosing their entire motive for leaving.

Which leaves much to be speculated.

Granted, employees quit for a variety of reasons: they don’t like the work they do, they don’t get enough recognition, they don’t fit into the company culture, they want a better work/life balance, the list goes on.

But as for why your best talent leaves, you might be surprised to discover the one common denominator that influences many departure-related decisions:

It’s not them, it’s you.

And, at least partially, your company.

Your best performers usually have it a little better than other employees: they’re probably making more money, they have a good working relationship with upper management, they may enjoy a little more flexibility at work, and they’re comfortable with the job they are doing.

But when one of your top-rated employees decides to jump ship, you should recognize that it’s a serious decision, and it’s typically related (at least in part) to one of several common reasons:

Better job offer (higher pay, more PTO, better benefits)

More than likely, your best employees realize they are your best employees, and expect to be compensated as such. And if they aren’t earning what they potentially could somewhere else, that’s your (or the company’s) fault.

Good employees know their worth, and if they feel they aren’t receiving what they deserve, someone else will be eager to snatch them up.

If you can determine that money is the prime motivator, you might be tempted to offer them a raise if they stay. But that single action could send the wrong message, and reinforce their decision to leave.


While it might seem sensical, it often makes the employee question why you weren’t paying them what they’re worth in the first place. If you couldn’t afford it then, how will you afford it now?

Not enough recognition or appreciation

Employees need to know their work means something to someone. Even a simple “Thank you” can do the trick. But the majority of employees feel those thank you’s are too far and few between. Again, that’s your fault.

As a manager, you wear many hats, including the one that boosts morale. Without adequate recognition, your top talent may never strive to become better or may fail to chase advancement opportunities.

No advancement opportunities

For entry-level employees, there’s nowhere to go but up. But what about those who have earned their place at the top? Employees may feel they’ve accomplished all they need to and have in a sense “finished” their job. If that’s the case, you’re entirely to blame.

Oftentimes, an employee is so good at what they do that the company feels that person is irreplaceable in their position. But it also limits the employee’s ability to show their company what else they’re capable of, perhaps performing even better in another, more desirable job title.

True, you won’t be able to retain every employee who wants to leave. But your best talent should be worth a little extra effort on your part to maintain a solid relationship.

13 Apr 2017

10 Great Places to Find Your Dream Candidates This Week

10 Great Places to Find Your Dream Candidates This Week

Hiring at your company? Finding the best employees among the thousands of job seekers is possible. You just need to know where to look.

If you’re like most hiring managers, you view the whole recruiting process as both an opportunity and a challenge. It’s tedious work sifting through applicant after applicant. You know what you need, but you’re not always sure if you are attracting the best candidates for your job openings.

Here are a few great places to find your dream candidates this week. Several of these ideas may seem so simple, and that’s exactly why some of them will probably work for you, too.

  1. Among Your Existing Employees

Hiring from within your organization isn’t just a great place to look for your next candidate, it’s also one of your least costly options as well. Consider putting a job announcement out internally first. Chances are, there is someone within your company who would be perfect for the position you’re looking to fill.

  1. Connected With Your Current Staff

Similarly, you can have your current employees be your eyes, ears, and mouthpiece to their network of friends and associates. Let them recommend some great candidates to you. It’s not likely that an existing employee would recommend someone who wouldn’t be worth your time and consideration. They put their own reputation on the line when they recommend someone.

  1. Small Business Forums

Looking for someone with a well-rounded skill set? What about someone who takes initiative and isn’t afraid of some risk? Small business owner forums are a great place to source quality candidates. Visit and listen to groups on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook, or attend small business networking events in your local area. There are plenty of entrepreneurial types who are trying their hand at freelance type work, but who may be interested in working for a company again if it was the right fit for you and them.

  1. Facebook

Speaking of Facebook, you can definitely reach your dream candidate on this social network and even go so far as to target them directly. Thanks to Facebooks targeting advertising capabilities, you can push your job announcement out to people with your ideal qualifications and demographics. And it can cost you as little as one dollar a day, so it’s ideal for every budget!

  1. Your Competitors

Professional sports teams trade players all the time. It isn’t so different in the corporate world either. It’s easy to connect with your competitor’s employees over LinkedIn. If there is someone in particular that you’d like to know more because of their skills – maybe they just earned their CFA – try just scheduling a simple coffee with them. It’s just a conversation after all. Maybe it can lead to an opportunity for both of you down the road.

  1. Your Website

Some of your most enthusiastic candidates are trolling your website. Do you have a recruiting page set-up on your website that is actively collecting emails and resumes when you have available positions and when you don’t? If you don’t, you absolutely should. Building your own internal database of possible candidates provides you with a shortlist of people who actively sought your company out and have expressed a desire to work for you.

  1. Industry Conferences

Industry-specific conferences are wonderful places to meet great potential candidates. If they are at the conference, they are actively keeping themselves apprised of what’s current in their field and learning new skills. Better yet, the people presenting at the conference or who are participating on panel discussions are even more important for you to know. Looking for someone with leadership abilities? Good communication skills? Start collecting names and connecting with these folks. Maybe they will want to come work for you one day soon.

  1. Past Applicants

How often do you forget about the list of “no’s”? Maybe they weren’t the best suited for the position you interviewed them for two years ago, but what about today? Mine through old applicants and request updated resumes from people who you think have the potential to fit your current needs.

  1. Email Contacts

Your email list may be your most valuable recruiting asset. Don’t under estimate the effectiveness of making your email contacts aware of an open position within your organization. Your email lists can all serve to procure you some really great candidates. From current clients to centers of influence to blog subscribers… let everyone know you’re hiring. You will probably be pleasantly surprised by the opportunities that come forward just by simply tapping into your own network.

  1. Outsourced Recruiting Resource

Using an outsourced recruiting firm can get you connected with great candidates quickly. Firms that help companies source and place quality candidates are especially effective at finding passive candidates who may not be looking for a job change right now. Recruiting firms can devote more resources to sourcing and screening for the very best candidates. This can be a tremendous help to any company that maybe doesn’t have the in-house recruiting ability to be a thorough or if a particular position is especially crucial to the organization like an executive level position.



4 Apr 2017

How HR Departments Should Be Using Social Media

How HR Departments Should Be Using Social Media

Social media has long established a natural presence in our personal lives, but its footprint as a business tool is becoming increasingly more commonplace, as well. And it’s no longer limited to marketing purposes.

Human Resources has long served as the two-way social gateway between company and employee, and many HR departments have turned to social media to widen that gate. But exactly how should Human Resources use social media to benefit both camps?

While implementing Facebook or LinkedIn into the hiring and recruiting process continues to be par for the course, HR departments should know that’s only the tip of the social media iceberg. Explore these four solid ways you can use social media for Human Resources:

4 Ways to Add Social Media to Your HR Strategy

Promote Your Company Wellness Program

If you are starting or hosting a wellness program, social media encompasses the peer-to-peer involvement that can ensure your program’s success. Employees can interact with other employees who are also completing challenges in the program, which can spur conversations and provide motivation to help them reach their goals.

You can administer part or all of your program via your social channels, including daily inspirational messages, weekly goals, contests, prizes, and feedback from participants. Social Media also gives your HR department a direct viewing window into your employees’ involvement, helping you to gauge the program’s success and finding ways to improve it.

Recognize Employees or Company Achievements

Your employees can become enwrapped in their daily duties so much so that they fail to recognize what’s happening with the rest of the company. Share your company’s achievements and awards on your social channels, or recognize your top performing employees on their accomplishments.

Use as a Real-Time Knowledge Base

Regardless of your industry or company size, questions will arise. And sometimes, employees will need answers to their questions fast. But instead of hindering every employee for the answer, putting the question on social media can reach a broader audience in less time.

Retail giant Sears developed their own internal social networking site, Pebble, to achieve this specific purpose (among others). Using Pebble, employees can connect with others in their own store and in Sears and Kmart stores across the country. Here they can share customer stories, ask and answer each others’ questions, and promote the company culture.

This peer-driven strategy makes a great way to boost engagement while providing a valuable resource all employees can benefit from. If you can’t shell out the funds for your own private social network, consider setting up a private Facebook group that only employees can access.

Post Inter-company Communications

A study by BLR discovered that 41% of HR departments use social media for employee communications. Providing valuable information via social networks gives employees of every job title a chance to engage and provide feedback, which gives HR departments additional insight into the employee ecosystem.

You can let employees know about health fairs and company outings, get volunteers for committees, welcome new employees, share news about promotions, or post internal job openings. It can also serve as a neutral source to quell widespread rumors about the company, such as impending layoffs or other falsified information that can harm employee morale.

Human Resources use social media in a multitude of ways to connect a company with employees and prospects, but don’t limit your efforts to the suggestions above.

However, if you want to ensure the success of any of your social media strategies, you should make employee engagement your number one focus. Your posts won’t matter if no one sees them, so make sure you give your employees plenty of encouragement to get involved.

10 Mar 2017

4 Types of Candidates All Great Recruiters Know to Avoid

4 Types of Candidates All Great Recruiters Know to Avoid

Are you looking for all-star talent? You probably won’t find it in these four all-too-familiar types of candidates.

No matter your industry or company size, your HR department will at some point become inundated with applicants that don’t fit the bill. And the sooner you can eliminate the ones that stand out for all the wrong reasons, the more time you can devote to candidates who could potentially earn the new employee badge.

Weeding out the misfits isn’t always as easy as looking at a resume. But after a single interview with the following three types of candidates, seasoned HR managers and entry level recruiters alike will realize that their biggest selling point is how they look on paper:

4 Types of Job Seekers That Make the Worst Employees

The Well-Rehearsed Actor

Does your candidate provide a quick answer for every question? Do the answers seem like they came from a textbook? Do you detect any conviction in their responses?

All candidates want to nail their interview, so much so that some resort to researching your company’s interview process online. And with the copious amount of easily accessible articles on interview skills, common interview questions, and tips and tricks, candidates can prepare themselves for the big Q&A like never before.

But there is such a thing as over-preparedness. Candidates who give generic answers they think the recruiter wants to hear can mean they don’t trust their own interview prowess and instead turn to internet “cheat sheets” to sound more confident and capable. Hint: If the answers sound too good to be true, they probably are.

The Job Hopper

Six months here, twelve months there, and a whopping 2 years at their last employer – if this is your candidate’s resume, you might be dealing with a job hopper.

Short tenures in and of themselves are not a red flag. The Millennial generation is more likely to have job hopped more than the previous generation as a result of the economy and lack of jobs. Therefore, you must decide on a case by case basis if short tenures warrant legitimate concern. Is the candidate unmotivated? Do they loathe change in the workplace? Did they get a poor annual review? Do they constantly search for greener pastures?

The Job Squatter

Similar to the ‘Job Hopper,’ the ‘Job Squatter’ is not necessarily a sure option. When someone spends too much time with a single employer, it can signal complacency. Loyalty is a wonderful quality to have, but if it stifles a candidate’s ability to advance their skill-set, it can become detrimental to their future employment prospects.

The best recruiters know to look for candidates who have steadily advanced their careers, even if they have been employed with the same company. They know how to spot career progression through increased responsibility, promotions, and department/title changes. It is a huge red flag if a candidate has held the same position with the same employer with the same level of responsibility for a long time.

The Unprepared Candidate

Wrinkled shirt, no pen, mussed hair, typos on resume – the lack of attention to detail makes you wonder how badly they want the job. Unpreparedness does not always assume the form of physical appearance. With internet access only a smartphone away, candidates can – and should – look into the companies they have applied to and prepare questions to ask during the interview. Unfortunately, many candidates still fail to recognize the importance of self-initiated research and arrive to their interview without a clue as to what the company actually does.

Every employee, regardless of job title, acts as a representative to your company. And if a candidate can only market themselves as partially prepared, you can only expect them to perform their job in much the same way.


What type of candidate are you looking for? Learn more about our exclusive Talent Acquisition Program here.


24 Feb 2017

The 5-Minute Tasks That Will Make You a Better HR Professional

the 5 minute tasks that will make you a better hr professional

Every good HR professional wants to do better at his or her job. The desire to learn new skills is only the beginning. Here’s a list of 5-minute tasks to help you on your way to greatness. 

Since HR professionals must be forward-thinking and people-centered, among a seemingly endless list of other professional descriptors, one key to improving performance is to focus on the power of positive change. When positive change can take place, you know you’re doing your job well. With that in mind, here are some useful 5-minute tasks for helping HR professionals be the best they can be.

Task #1: Show Appreciation

Since much of the role of HR is building strong, positive relationships within the organization, it’s important to show appreciation on a regular basis. This becomes an easy 5-minute task, especially when you schedule for it in your week.

Pick any day of the week- Tuesday, let’s say. Every Tuesday, choose one employee and thank him or her for doing a good job. People are motivated by praise, and everyone forgets to acknowledge good work. It also helps build relationships since it opens the floor up to conversation and builds trust.

Task #2: Set New Tech Goals Each Week

Since technology plays an increasingly important role in the field of HR, it’s easy to get left behind. You need it for communication and administrative systems like payroll, benefits and healthcare, and also for managing your team. Finally, technology is fast becoming one of the largest components in relationship-building activities at work, as social media becomes more prevalent in the work place.

Mastering all the software platforms is part of your job, but it’s safe to say you’ll never know everything. To stay on top of things, however, set new mini-goals each week so you can stay current. One week, for example, you might delve into those advanced features of your communications software, which until now you’ve left untouched. All it takes is 5 uninterrupted minutes a day to learn quick tips.

Task #3: Renew Your Vision

Much of the work of HR professionals is hard to define: they serve as brand ambassadors to employees, they hold leadership accountable, they serve as sounding boards for employees, and they help build consensus in the overall workplace, among other important functions.

Needless to say, it’s easy to lose focus and feel overwhelmed. Spending 5 minutes of the day focusing on your vision and purpose can go a very long way towards restoring your energy. Try and see the Big Picture and find your meaning: what drives you and what you see as your purpose at work. This, like no other task, can propel you to greatness in your job.

Task #4: Build Your Professional Acumen

Spend five minutes per day catching up on news, trends, and new research in the Human Resources profession. You might be top dog right now, but losing track of what’s going on in the industry will make you lose your edge.

Subscribe to a good email newsletter, find a great blog, or peruse the pages of an industry magazine- again: all it takes is 5 minutes to read one article and stay informed on the latest in your field.

Task #5: Take Stock of the Week’s Challenges

Since HR is very much about spearheading or guiding company change, you have to be ready yourself to combat the obstacles ahead. One way to do that is every Monday, take stock of the challenges ahead for that week.

Facing your obstacles head-on and solving important problems efficiently will pave the way for positive change to take place at work. Whether it’s small change you’re focused on or sweeping, organizational change: facing the week’s challenges in an organized and efficient manner will allow those important positive changes to take place.

And that’s a great way to conclude this series of 5-minute tasks: becoming a better HR professional means you can help others at work become better, too. And that’s one very important definition of positive change!



9 Feb 2017