You have to pay attention to the signs and signals you’ll receive on your job search.
If you are paying close attention, you’ll begin to form an impression of each employer you deal with. One job is not just like any job. Some jobs will lift your heart every day and stimulate your brain. Others will crush your spirit.
You have to get a sense of the culture of any organization you’re considering joining. Luckily, there are signals about the culture at every stage of
If you are alert to them, you’ll pick up signals about a prospective employer’s culture starting the minute you make first contact with them.
We tend to miss the signals employers send out while they’re recruiting new hires. Wtend to miss them because our spidey sense is not at its most finely-tuned when we’re job-hunting.
When you’re job-hunting, there is almost always a level of fear in the mix. You need a job. Fear-juice is moving in your veins. Your fear impedes your clear thinking. You might miss the signals that a prospective employer is sending out — signals that say “This is not a good place for you to work.”
Until you take the wrong job and find yourself questioning the life decisions that brought you to this painful chapter, you may easily think “Listen, if somebody offers me a job, I don’t care what the company is like to work for. I’m taking the job!”
No one could blame you for thinking that way. Bills are real. Your income keeps the lights on.
Would it be worth taking a potentially horrendous job, hunkering down and hoping for the best — possibly keeping the job-search going on the side? Would the money you earned doing that be worth the aggravation?
What if the awful job in a bad organization devalues your resume?
Do you want to take a job that you might not want on your resume?
It is never an easy decision. We tend to think we will find the fortitude we need to stick it out at a truly abysmal workplace, but it is tough to pull it off. Sometimes the wrong job can destroy your mojo so completely that it takes years to recover.
Once you take a terribly wrong job and then escape from it, you will always be more wary.
Here are ten signals to watch for as you’re interviewing with a prospective employer. These are signals that you’re interviewing with the wrong employer!
1. Throughout the interview process, signals are dropped. You are told to wait for email instructions that never arrive. No ne on the employer side of the conversation seems particularly concerned when you bring up these issues. You are a very low priority.
2. Your experience as a candidate is mostly made up of your interaction with machines and software. You were required to complete a questionnaire first, and then a test. You’ve been in the recruiting pipeline for three weeks. You’ve fulfilled three big requests that the employer made of you, and you still haven’t spoken to a human being (nor received any assurance that you ever will).
3. You’ve been in the recruiting pipeline for three weeks, but you still don’t know much more about the job you are applying for than its title, a two-paragraph job description and the manager’s name.
4. You were required to provide your current and past salary details the minute you became a candidate with this employer, but you haven’t been told the salary range for the open position, nor whether your expected salary and the salary range for the open position are well-matched.
5. If you are working with a third-party recruiter, the recruiter tells you “I’m sorry. The client just isn’t responding. They get this way sometimes. They drop off the map.” This is a clear sign that the company you’re donating your valuable time to does not have its act together. If they don’t love you now, don’t think they will love you better once they hire you!
6. You’ve had two interviews and they both seemed to go well. You have another interview scheduled with the big boss next week — but you are also scheduled to join a team conference call, attend a mixer after work and prepare a three-page marketing brochure, as part of your interviewing process. Don’t waste your time with employers who want you to work for free, before you are hired!
7. You’ve been told that if you become a top contender for the position, you will need to provide written proof of your earnings for the last three years. Unless you are going to get access to the company’s payroll files to see what they paid the last person in the job, this is an outrageous request. These are not people who can grow your flame.
8. Initially you were told that the job reported to Roberta with a dotted line to Xiao, but now they say that the straight line goes to Boris and Roberta is out of the picture. Real life is tumultuous and things change fast, but the most effective organizations don’t switch up their plans every two days. That’s the sign of a company in panic mode. Unless they can clearly articulate for you what specificBusiness Painyou will solve in your role and why they care about that pain enough to hire you, don’t take the job. If the reporting relationship, job title, composition of the job and other elements keep changing as you interview, be wary!
9. Get out of the pipeline if they tell you that they love you, but they still want to see more candidates. They probably don’t have any other candidates. They will have to go find some in a hurry. Why would they do that, when they have you on deck? You are really good at what you do — but you are expensive! What if there’s someone else who is just as good as you, and less expensive? Don’t sit around and wait for an employer to interview other people and see if they can save a few bucks. Walk away if they won’t make an offer.
10. The surest sign that an organization is not worth your talents is when they cannot discuss
compensation like adults. Realbusiness people sit down with you and say “So, what will it take to get you on board here?” Face to face at the end of the hiring process, you and your manager can nail down your compensation package in under five minutes. If the people you’re interviewing with won’t do that — or if they send the message that their number-one goal is to make the cheapest hire possible — run!