Job Listings

Trust: The Most Important Component of Your Job Search

2010-01-18 09:03:45

Over the last month I have asked recruiters 10 questions about their work. I encourage you to read the responses – Sean Rehder , Craig Campbell and Glenn Kwarcinski – because their answers can help you understand how recruiters think.

Over the course of many interviews it became clear that most recruiters agree on one thing: they want you to give them straight and honest answers. Honesty and integrity ranked amongst the most important attributes they are looking for in candidates.

This makes sense. After all, a recruiter is like your agent: they are representing you to the hiring manager. They are giving you their professional stamp of approval, their word that you are worth the hiring manager’s time. The recruiter understands that, when all is said and done, their “word” is really how they make money and keep their jobs. A recruiter who earns the trust of a hiring manager is more likely to fill the position quickly and reliably. When a candidate breaks their trust the recruiter ends up hurting their position with the hiring manager. A candidate’s casual shading of the truth could end up costing the recruiter money, or worse, their job.

Admittedly trust is not a two way street, at least not with many recruiters and hiring managers. As Liz and others have pointed out, companies usually treat candidates poorly, failing to give them complete information or even treat them with basic respect. As a job seeker you may find yourself in a position where you think you will be disadvantaged by telling the truth, or where you feel that the lack of transparency on the part of the recruiter or hiring manager warrants a similar response from you.

Don’t give into that feeling. If you are interested in a job you need the recruiter on your side. Regardless of how poorly you have been treated, you have to maintain the recruiter’s trust.

Over the next couple of pieces we are going to talk about the following questions:

  • How do you build trust with a recruiter?
  • How do you position yourself in the most favorable light without shading the truth?
  • How do you deliver bad news while minimizing its impact?