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October 26, 2017

Moving Target Syndrome

Everyone knows it’s hard to hit a moving target.

In the world of recruiting, there’s a common problem I call Moving Target Syndrome (let’s call it MTS). In the classic presentation of MTS, the hiring company keeps changing direction. One week they’re looking for candidates with this profile, next week they’re looking for candidates with that profile, and the following week it’s something else. Read More

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October 18, 2017

Is Videoconferencing a Good Tool for Interviews?

Videoconference is great for a call with your mom. But it’s not great for judging candidates, or for convincing them to join your company.

I understand why Skype and its peers are increasingly popular for interviewing. Everyone wants to save time, and hiring people is among the most time-consuming of business activities. Why not get more efficient?

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October 5, 2017

Get to the Point

edward_everett_daguerreotypeThe great Edward Everett was a US Senator, Governor of Massachusetts, President of Harvard, and renowned orator. Today, despite his many accomplishments, he’s remembered as the guy who couldn’t get to the point.

Everett was the featured speaker at the 1863 dedication of the Gettysburg National Cemetery, where he delivered a 13,000-word speech that lasted more than two hours. He was followed by President Abraham Lincoln, who spoke for two minutes. Lincoln’s 270-word Gettysburg Address went down as one of the greatest speeches in history. Read More

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April 24, 2017

Theranos: When Smart People do Stupid Things

The Wall Street Journal continues to report on the saga of Theranos, the former Silicon Valley darling that continues its epic self-immolation.

On March 24, Christopher Weaver and John Carreyrou reported that Theranos is offering investors additional shares in return for an agreement not to sue the company or its founder, the disgraced Elizabeth Holmes. Read More

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April 20, 2017

The Job Market Is Hot. What Does That Mean for Employers?

If you’re a hiring manager, you know the job market is as hot as it’s been in years. Competition for talent is intense. That means it’s harder to attract great new employees, and harder to keep the ones you already have.

What does that mean for you? Here are some things to think about:

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April 19, 2017

When Should You Share Personal Information in an Interview?

The candidate had a solid background, but there were some strange transitions on his resume. He’d landed a big overseas posting with a prestigious company, then abruptly left a year later for a lesser position back in the US. It didn’t make sense, and I assumed he was fired.

I asked the candidate what happened, and he gave me a response I wasn’t expecting. Read More

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April 17, 2017

Liar’s Poker

I had just started a new search and was interviewing the first potential candidates. One of them called me a few days after our meeting. Read More

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April 13, 2017

It’s All About People

Set of diverse business people isolated on white background. Different nationalities and dress styles. Cute and simple flat cartoon style.

Back in September, I attended MassDevice DeviceTalks Boston. As usual, the MassDevice folks put on a terrific program.

One of the featured speakers was Jeff Burbank, Founder and CEO of NxStage Medical, the dialysis company. In a candid interview, he talked about the company’s growth, and the challenges he faced along the way. Read More

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April 4, 2017

Interviewing for the CEO Job? Think Like an Owner

I’m recruiting a CEO for a medical device company that’s owned by a private equity firm. Last week, I was talking with one of the partners about his phone call with one of the candidates.

He said, “The thing that distinguished this guy were his questions. They showed he thinks like an owner. It’s incredibly powerful. In fact, you should tell candidates to do that because it really sets them apart.”

Now I’ve told you.

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October 20, 2016

When It’s Time to Close, Do It Fast

When It's Time to CloseIt’s something every green salesperson learns in their first few weeks on the job: When the customer is ready to buy, go for the close.

Recruiting is just another form of sales. When you are recruiting an executive to join your team, you’re selling the job opportunity and the company. When you find the right candidate, and she’s ready to say yes, close the deal right away. Delay dramatically increases the odds something will go wrong. Read More

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