All things considered, it’s been an active summer in terms of Puget Sound hiring, and many clients of ours have been fortunate enough to receive multiple job offers — and face the challenge of trying to select the best path from among several different opportunities.  And while this situation might not elicit sympathy from those folks still questing after a single offer, the anxiety of selecting from among several different employment options can be tremendous — and “buyer’s remorse” is a very real factor that candidates often struggle with during this process.

This being said, one of the most significant factors we advise our clients to consider when making these decisions is to reflect on how they were treated throughout the hiring process.  In most cases, we believe that there is a strong correlation between how hiring and interviewing activities are conducted at a company and what one can ultimately expect in terms of organizational culture.  If the process is conducted very respectfully, the candidate is made to feel like a priority, and the majority of timelines and commitments are honored throughout the “courtship ritual”, this usually signals a company that places a high value on its employees and likely has smart, solid business practices in place.  If instead, however, the hiring process is a nightmare, fraught with annoying interviewing steps and inconsistent communication, job seekers would be wise to contemplate what this might suggest in terms of the company’s day-to-day values and business methods.  This examination becomes all the more illuminating when one considers that both candidates AND companies tend to be on their best behavior during the interviewing process!

Examples of these principles in action?  One client of ours recently went through an management-level hiring process that was completed from start to finish within a single week, and at the end of the interviewing stage, the CEO of the company personally called the candidate and asked him to come on board.  Upon accepting the offer, our client then had a very generous gift basket delivered to his home to celebrate the new relationship.  On the flip side, another individual we are working with recently decided to walk away from an opportunity right in the middle of the offer negotiation stage because the company implied they were “insulted” by his mild counteroffer — then later revealed that this was simply a negotiating ploy on their part and that they truly wanted him on board, after all!  Needless to say, he moved on (with our encouragement) to greener pastures, unimpressed by this first taste of the company’s value system, ethics, and business approach.

Got your own stories to tell about the good/bad approaches that companies take to “wooing” candidates in today’s job marketplace?  If so, we’d love you to e-mail them here.  We’re going to be speaking at an upcoming event on this very topic, so any fresh thoughts or ammunition would be welcomed!