The Effect of Applicant Influence Tactics on Recruiter Perceptions of Fit and Hiring Recommendations: A Field Study

Unfortunately, someone has found it necessary to prove that sucking up to recruiters works (via Gerry here). Who are these recruiters and where are their BS detectors (sorry to be so crass…this just ticks me off)?

I mean, seriously…who ARE these recruiters? I hope this doesn’t get out (well, kind of too late, but I hope it doesn’t get worse)

So you (resume in hand) meet a recruiter from your company of choice…what do you do? Ingratiate or self-promote? Um, how about neither? Here’s the big story. If you want the job, just BE GOOD.

My interactions with candidates are not ego building exercises…not for myself, not for the candidate (they can try but it won’t work). If they want to have a professional exchange about their qualifications relative to our hiring needs, that is fantastic. No subversive tactics necessary.

I’m just saying.


Comments (7)

  1. Stephen says:

    I could not agree more. If you are a Recruiter worth anything, red flags and sirens go off with the hard sell.

  2. rsm says:

    The better the product the less the sale needed.

    Anyone who would make a hiring decision on the kiss up criteria is officially incompetent and needs trip behind the wood shed. As unqualified as the "pretender" attempting the big schoomze – arama. "Not a highjacking folks, just a gentle detour."

  3. Sean Kent says:

    I had to read the subject thread 3 times before I understood what it meant. It’s been a loooong day!!

    P.S. The DFW airport has great Auntie Annie’s pretzels – I like the almond ones!

  4. Jeff Atwood says:

    Don’t hate me because I’m beautiful.

    I’m just saying.

  5. Yet another study that has found that one type of bias in selection can cloud the results. And as mentioned above, trying this one is a pretty risky strategy.

    The point is that everyone involved in selection has bias from time to time – the key to a great recruiter is to be able to identify when there is bias occuring, and to counter it by digging deeper.

    Once, during a training session that I was leading with a bunch of senior managers we identified 32 different types of bias ranging from the typical ‘halo’ type effects (they were in X project team at Y organisation, they must be good) to ones like Jeff’s suggestion that we are physically attracted to some people.

    The trick as a good recruiter is to recognise the bias and to ensure that you get data to validate / disqualify it. As a candidate you need to engage in an honest and open conversation about your strengths and aims. Selection is all about ensuring ‘fit’ – if you pull the wool over the recruiters eyes you will probably only be found out by your next manager.

  6. Heather says:

    Jeff…are you making fun of me? ; )

    Andrew-well said!

  7. Well, yeah but personality is a factor in hiring. We want to recommend people we think will fit in. And we think people we like will fit in.

    And not everyone who sucks up to you is as loathsome as Uriah Heep. Someone can make you feel good about you by making you feel comfortable with him. Kapeesh?