The Myth of the Perfect Candidate

February 16, 2015

It’s natural and wise to be very protective of your team. No one wants a dissatisfied employee or a toxic work environment. When looking to bring in someone new, you want to make sure you get the right someone. You want The Perfect Candidate. The problem is Perfect Candidates are in short supply when the demand for labor is high. And keep in mind, that Perfect Candidate might not really be as Perfect as he or she seems. In telecom, you have to adapt even more to the growing demand and shrinking supply of talent.

The swing in the talent pools from 2008 when unemployment threatened our economy to now has been incredible, especially in telecom. This is great for the economy but makes hiring more tricky. Overall, it’s not a terrible problem to have, but a problem nonetheless. Economic conditions play a role in your hiring strategy, and right now the labor market is not as flush as it was. So that means you need to lower your standards right? Wrong. You need to adapt your standards. That right someone is out there, but you’re not going to find him or her if you don’t know the truly important things to look for.

Don’t hire on Pedigree.

Rethink the boxes you need checked. This is where it helps to have a staffing firm that can curate the process and steer in reliable, smart and curious candidates that make sense for you. Maybe the candidate didn’t graduate from a top University. That’s OK. Can they learn quickly? Are they curious? Motivated? Are they nice? These are the qualities that are going to be more important to your team’s success. Your business changes fast. And the way you look to build your team also needs to.

Experience: Focus on the What not the Where.

Passionate people are everywhere, not just in the sunny offices of Apple and Google. Listen closely to the way people talk about what they’ve done. The underlying current of successful people is passion. Were they able to find something in their daily tasks that drove them to do great things? Maybe it was something that’s hard to express on a resume.

Embracing Change Sure Sounds Good.

We’ve all heard the corporate mantra, and it’s easy to say you embrace change when there’s nothing you fear more. Some people are better than others at working without a roadmap. Identifying these people will make the difference. Change is the only thing that’s constant.

Collaborative over Siloed Skill Set.

A team made up of people from diverse backgrounds working together always works better. Avoid the “geniuses” who don’t have the patience to work at the slow pace of their teammates’ inferior intellects. These are the people that create the toxic environment, and it’s sometimes hard to spot them. In fact, they’re often the ones that look like the Perfect Candidate.

About NextGen

NextGen is the brainchild of longtime telecom professionals with nearly 50 years of experience and millions of dollars in Telecom Recruiting Services. We focus on establishing long term relationships with our clients and candidates so we can recruit the best and the brightest in the telecom industry. This ‘quality over quantity’ approach is at the heart of everything we do and has resulted in successful job placements at Fortune 1000 firms worldwide.

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