As a business leader you want to attract the best and brightest to join your company. In your search for high quality candidates who will be a good fit, leaders or hiring managers should be aware of the words they use to portray the corporate work environment. Certain statements, if you read between the lines, can be real turn-offs for desirable candidates who can afford to be selective about where they work … precisely the type of people you want to hire!
What NOT to say about your company
“We have a certain way of doing things around here that works.”
What does this reek of? Rigid thinking; a company that says “we’ve always done it this way” are most likely not open to new ideas that will shake up the status quo or receptive to suggestions for performance improvement methods.
“We’re like a family here.”
Well, some families are great while others are downright dysfunctional. When there are tough decisions to be made in business they shouldn’t be personal. So some separation is desirable. In a good corporation, work is work and family is family.
“The only thing that we care about is results.”
If everyone willingly adheres to a company’s code of ethics then this sentiment works. But in many cases, such as in sales organizations, that’s not the reality. When a “no matter what it takes” attitude exceeds the confines of good judgment and legality, then you have to ask yourself if this is a place you want to work.
“We like to keep a low profile.”
What is the advantage for a company of being unknown? In this era of omnipresent content sharing and information, there is absolutely no benefit to being invisible … unless you’re launching a new stealth bomber, a breakthrough app, or a new cereal that tastes astonishingly like Red Bull.
“I personally oversee every project that goes out of this shop.”
Can you say micro-manager? If there are only three people working at the company, okay sure. But in a large organization, how is that even possible, let alone beneficial? Business leaders and company owners should be focused on moving their company forward and empowering their employees to do the jobs they were hired to do with autonomy and respect.
“We’re not out to win awards.”
If your company doesn’t want to be recognized in your industry for its achievements, then what is your benchmark for success? Just because sales may be strong right now doesn’t mean that a more acclaimed competitor getting accolades for their innovative thinking won’t easily usurp your market share.
“My door is always open.”
There’s nothing wrong with this … if it’s the truth. Often it’s not. Owners will say they want to hear your comments or ideas, but when you actually try and approach them they are either too busy to listen to you or may discount what you’re saying as either unimportant or irrelevant. As a business leader, if you’re genuinely open to fresh thinking there are plenty of effective ways to encourage employees to share their ideas, such as regular group brainstorm sessions or “big idea of the week” awards.
What are some of the statements you’ve heard from business leaders that set off alarm bells for you? Please post your comments here and let us know.
To help you hire less and retain more of the top talent you want, check out our Employee Motivation: 3 insights from a headhunter post. Learn more about Technology Recruiter Gary Hinde and connect with him on LinkedIn.
IQ PARTNERS is a Recruitment Agency with offices in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, & Halifax. We help companies hire better, hire less & retain more. We have teams of specialist recruiters in Financal Services & Insurance, Marketing Communications & Media, Emerging Tech & Telecom, Consumer Goods & Retail, B2B & Industrial, Technology, Accounting & Finance, HR & Operations, Energy, Mining & Engineering, Life Sciences, and Construction, Property & Real Estate. IQ PARTNERS has its head office in Toronto and operates internationally via Aravati Global Search Network. Click here to view current job openings and to register with us.