Last week I wrote a blog about how a recruiter can help a business really understand it’s reputation in the market place, and how important that is when it comes to attracting talent to work for you. The same argument applies if you are looking for a new job……
Moving jobs is a big decision for most people. Regardless of what your reasons for moving are, it is important to get it right. For most of us that means joining a company with a like-minded culture, a boss that you can work with, a secure and stable company, a job that you enjoy, opportunities for progression etc. Getting it wrong can be a disaster, especially if you are moving from something that already ticks all those boxes for you. But how do you know if you’re getting it right…..
I suspect that most of us form our opinion of whether an opportunity is going to be right for us based on gut feel. I certainly have done in the past, and with very mixed results. Sometimes my gut feel has been spot on. The role has turned out to be exactly what it was advertised and pitched as. The culture was exactly what the website said it would be. My boss, who I liked at interview, was great. But it has also gone the other way….
Why ? Well, companies and hiring managers have a tendency to sugar coat an opportunity. In a market where the competition for talent is high, it is natural that we all try to paint our opportunity in a slighter better light than is maybe real. It may not be done in a mischievous way to deliberate mislead people (although this practice does happen). But at the same time, I doubt any of us give an absolutely, 100% genuine, warts and all accurate picture – we tend to ‘forget’ to tell a prospective employee something that might put them off.
Of course, anyone who takes their career seriously, will do their own research. They will talk to people in their industry, perhaps even someone who has worked there before. They will check out social media channels to see if there is anything that should concern them. They might even run them through their paces disguised as a customer (my favourite way to check a company out). Here’s another suggestion… call a recruiter and ask for their opinion.
It makes sense – there will be few people better positioned to give you an accurate and up to date picture of a company, or future boss than a recruiter who knows their industry. Take me for example…..as a Rec-to-Rec consultant, I know stuff about recruitment agencies and individuals in Australia that the majority of the industry don’t know. You would never be told at an interview, and unless you know the right people, you would probably never get to hear it. I know this stuff because I am constantly talking to people in the industry and hearing things that I probably shouldn’t know. And some of the things I know may well change your mind about joining a company, or vice versa (it’s not all about bad stuff). The same principle applies to any industry. A good recruiter who knows your industry really well can be a wealth of valuable information.
Of course, you need to trust the recruiter you are talking to, especially if it is the same recruiter who is representing you to that compay. And it would be foolish to just simply take what they say as gospel. But ,alongside your own research and gut feel, a chat with a recruiter(s) might just help you avoid making a big mistake. The truth is that none of us really know for sure what a company are going to be like until we are actually working for them- but when moving jobs is such a big decision, it makes sense to do everything possible to help you make the right decision.