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How hiring managers are like dancing dogs

Dogs will dance when there is no music.  Better said: they dance when there is no music that we can hear.  They are able to hear different levels of sound than we can.  One man teaches dogs to dance to music that is beyond the range of human hearing.  Since the dogs turn, jump and “dance” at the same time, it looks like magic.

Managers and CEO’s also dance to music other people cannot always hear. When hiring they have a good idea what they want, but sometimes don’t know how to express it.  Sometimes they are embarrassed to admit what they want. Occasionally they can’t admit it because of laws against discrimination.

I find any discrimination offensive.  The point is not that people discriminate.  People have hidden agendas.  They sometimes discriminate based on sex, age and race. More commonly they discriminate based on education, certifications, accent, tattoos, jewelry, cut of clothes, and haircut.  I’ve seen handwriting and typing skills torpedo several executive jobs. Changing jobs every two years is too much in some industries, and switching every six months can be as bad as felony theft.  Weight can be a killer at some companies.

What you consider unfair judgment is important, but it is not what keeps you from getting a job.  It is what the hiring manager considers excellent judgment that keeps you unemployed.  Whining won’t help.  If there is something about you that doesn’t fit with an environment, you won’t get hired.

If a man is offered a fact that goes against his instincts, he will scrutinize it closely, and unless the evidence is overwhelming, he will refuse to believe it. (Bertrand Russell)

If you are having a particularly tough time getting a job, it is time for some tough love.  You need to find someone who will really tell you the way you appear to hiring managers.  What is there about you that turns off employers?  We try to be very clear at AGI if someone is not a fit for a job.  We may not give all the reasons for failure, but we will tell the biggest reasons if the person is listening to us.  Unfortunately our honesty has occasionally meant that a candidate left in tears.  More often we helped people change what they needed to change to get a great job.

I’m in trouble when I say, “Managers are like dancing dogs.” But it is true.  They sometimes dance to music we cannot hear.

Something to do today

Having real trouble finding a job? Is it you or is it just luck?  It could be either.  Find a few people who can be brutally honest to help you find out.  And also remember, it may just be bad luck.

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