"Dewey Defeats Truman" - that famously inaccurate headline on the front of the Chicago Tribune is an apt reminder that there are no sure things in life. Everyone knew that Dewey would win that 1948 Presidential election, everyone but the voters. And Truman was returned to office to the shock of the pundits.
Similarly, "sure things" can ruin many a plan, particularly when it comes to recruitment. Guaranteed hires and placements are never certain.
Too Much Confidence Can Backfire
In a recent executive search that I conducted, I presented three highly-qualified CEO candidates to my client. One of them was absolutely sure that he would be hired. He was very experienced, he had a proven track record and he had impressed the search committee in his initial interview. It was a done deal, but in his mind only.
Though cautioned about being over-confident, he felt it would be a mistake on the client's part not to hire him. He was wrong. He left his "A" game at home before the final interview, something the other two candidates did not do, and the job was not offered to him. In the job search process, it is all about the interview and if you don't shine there, even if you are the most qualified for the job, you go home with hat in hand.
At any stage in your career, you must do the hard work and create strategies to "win" the interview.
On the other side of the coin, employers often feel that if they like a candidate, all they have to do is offer the job and the candidate will give an enthusiastic "yes!" After all, he or she would be a fool to turn them down. Unfortunately, it does not work that way. When hiring stars, employers must also "sell" the candidate on the reasons why they should accept the offer. Recruitment is a two-way street.
Wait for the Close
Confidence is good. But there are no absolutes. As a realtor friend of mine once said: "There are no roses until it closes." The same advice applies to landing a job. You don't have it until it is offered and the employer doesn't have a new employee until you say "yes."
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