How To Turn “Off” A Recruiter

Searching for a job can be a grueling process for many.  Oftentimes jobseekers become frustrated with the resume “black-hole,” lack of response from recruiters or going through multiple rounds of interviews and not landing that perfect job. These annoyances, and in some cases, lack of professionalism on the part of the employer, can drive a jobseeker insane. However, a jobseeker must be careful that their tactics don’t turn off a recruiter in the process.  Unfortunately, in the quest of finding their next opportunity, a jobseeker can make terrible mistakes that can land them in the “NO” or even “Hell NO” pile.

Here are 5 examples of how job seekers can totally blow their chances of landing a job.

1.  The “What do you have available” Jobseeker
I admire an “active” jobseeker that isn’t afraid to pick up the phone in order to promote their skills and find a job. However, I am not your personal job finder.  I do not have time to sit on the phone and run down every position that I have available in my organization.  If you are going to call, be prepared to either a) discuss how you qualify for a position that is currently available or b) inquire about near future openings that match your qualifications.  Almost every company has a corporate website where they list their job openings under the “Careers” section.  Please use it!

2.  The Stalker
Ok, I get it.  We told you during the interview we would get back to you in three days and we didn’t.  Sure, it’s perfectly acceptable to follow-up with an email and phone call.  I’m sure the response will be “We are still in the process of interviewing,” or “We’ll get back to you about next steps in a few days.”  Of course, you haven’t heard back.  So you email and call once again.  Have you ever heard the saying “3 strikes and you’re out?”  If so, use the same rule of the thumb when following up with a recruiter.  If you haven’t heard back after 3 tries, move on.  Chances are,

  1. You aren’t the candidate they want to pursue
  2. There may be some internal issues that are slowing down the process
  3. They really don’t have any feedback yet

Do NOT become a stalker.  Most Recruiters have caller id.  We can see you calling us every 5 minutes and hanging up. Calling and emailing constantly will do nothing but annoy the recruiter.  We will not be impressed with your “follow-up skills” and “sense of urgency.”

3.  Be Rude and Unprofessional
Ok, I admit it took me 3 weeks to get back to you after I stated it would be one week.  Really, it’s not my fault, the manager was on vacation and I couldn’t get an answer on whether or not we wanted to move forward with you or another candidate.  I know you are frustrated and angry, but please don’t do the following:

  • Yell at me when I finally call you back
  • Email me back in all CAPS. (That is still yelling my friend!)
  • Leave rude messages on my voicemail

If you decide to engage in any of the above, I have to rethink hiring you.  Actually, I already made my decision….I’m moving on to the next candidate.  If you behave this way during the interview process, I can only imagine how you’ll manage your team.

4.  Name-Dropping
I love candidates who use the art of networking to land their next opportunity.  However, when you continuously name-drop and state how well you know certain C-Level executives, I draw the line.  If they don’t know you, then you don’t know them.  You will not scare me into arranging an interview by telling me how upset the CFO will be if I don’t interview you.  Guess what???  I checked with the CEO, he / she have no clue that you exist.  The CFO’s Executive Assistant has already warned me that you have become a “Stalker” trying to get past HR, so I’m very well aware that no true professional or personal relationship exists.

5.  Lack of Enthusiasm
Nothing is worse than a candidate who acts as if they couldn’t care less about going through the interview process.  If you aren’t enthusiastic about the opportunity, then why should I be enthusiastic about your candidacy?  You took the time to apply online, at least be excited when I contact you about the job opportunity. Don’t say:

What job are you contacting me about? 
Hello, you applied, are you not keeping track?????

I really can’t take off work to interview.  I can be available in 2 weeks.
Seriously, you think I have time to wait two weeks to interview.  Did you not think you would have to take off work in order to interview????

Can we reschedule?
I understand things pop up and you may need to reschedule, but three times????  I’m moving on.

If you have been guilty of any of the aforementioned behaviors, stop IMMEDIATELY!  Remember, your goal is to impress and get the job.  Maintain professionalism at all times, even if you have been treated in a less than professional manner.  It’s an employer’s market and any little faux pas may cost you a great opportunity.

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