The Roller Coaster Ride of Recruiting

By Jenna Silverman

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Roller coasters for “fun”? No, thank you. For those of you who know me, I am not one to rush into line for a roller coaster. Don’t get me wrong, rides (think Indiana Jones at Disneyland) are a blast, roller coasters (think Tower of Terror at California Adventure), not so much. The feeling of having your life in the hands of some 16-year-old kid on summer vacation and having complete faith in some metal and bolts holding the entire structure together is unsettling. Roller coaster rides are similar to the ups and downs that we recruiters are all too familiar with in many ways. We have all dealt with the anticipation of finding the perfect candidate and working with them throughout the entire process, and dealing with the anticipation to help them over the finish line.

The anticipation waiting in the line

...is very similar to waiting for a rockstar candidate to get back to you. Constantly checking your email to see if they have responded gives you butterflies, much like watching the ride take on new participants. Waiting your turn or waiting for that response feels like time has stopped.

Getting on the roller coaster

...is like when you're finally get the response from the candidate you have been trying to tracking down. It is your time to sit in the hot seat and get ready to shine. You want to make sure that the candidate is as excited as you are to speak with them.

Buckling up for safety

...is like making sure all the questions are covered and you know everything about the candidate, inside and out. You don’t want to skip any part of this step as it is your life in the little metal clasp. Covering all the details about the company, role and team is like the buckle; making sure that it is secure before the ride attendant comes around to make sure that the ride can begin.

The Final Countdown to “GO”

...is when you send the candidate to the hiring manager to speak with. This is the time you want everything to fall into place and the ride to finally begin. You have been mentally preparing yourself for the adrenaline of the ride and now is the time.

The Climb or the Drop

...when the ride begins is very similar to getting the blessing from the interviewer to move forward or the unfortunate no and having cut the candidate. The interview goes positively and the climb of next steps begin, or the interview bombs and the drop is staring you right in the face.

The Flips

...of a roller coaster are unexpected much as is dealing with the unexpectedness of working with people. People do what is best for them and sometimes, it is not what you are expecting. One thing recruiting has taught me, always be prepared for the unexpected. When you are amping yourself up for the ride, you know the flips are part of it, but once on the roller coaster, it is hard to gauge when you are going to hit them.

The End of the ride

...is feeling calmness of knowing that the ride wasn’t as bad as you were anticipating, people are looking for the right opportunity for themselves and their families and you are there to help guide them through that journey. There is usually a surprise picture that is taken to see the utter terror on your face as the big drop is happening. This terror is similar to the realization that sometimes things are out of your hands and the candidate is not 100% on-board. You try your hardest to look as happy as possible, but sometimes you just can’t help it.

Feeling the ground beneath your feet

...is the best feeling, know knowing that things were out of your hands but now you have your feet back on the ground and you are back in control and ready to move onto the next ride to go through the whole process once again.

We promise to make building out your team or landing your next role as un-roller-coaster-like as possible. Contact us now if you'd like to chat about where your career is heading.