Toronto Marketing Recruiter Catherine Lund
By Catherine Lund, Toronto Marketing Recruiter

We’ve all heard them. “Hire for attitude, train for skill”, “People don’t leave jobs, they leave managers”, “Job-hoppers are bad hires”.  These top of mind hiring clichés seem to permeate our LinkedIn feeds, conversations, and in many cases can factor into a company’s talent acquisition strategy and influence hiring decisions.  But are they true?

1. Hire for attitude, train for skill.

This one is true and false, and largely depends on the8 Hiring Myths 1 culture and function of the company.  For instance, Richard Branson is a huge advocate for hiring for personality.  His latest joke is that next he’s going to start hiring pilots for Virgin that don’t know how to fly but have great attitudes!  Like flying a plane, there are some roles, in the healthcare field for example, that require specialized education or training that cannot be taught on the job.

2. People join companies, and they leave managers.

I would amend this a bit, and say:

People join companies (& opportunities).

People leave managers (& jobs).

The main reason people leave jobs is because they are not getting the proper management from their boss, particularly when job expectations are unclear.  However, even candidates with amazing mentors will leave positions if they are no longer challenged or have found greater opportunity for advancement elsewhere.

3. No news is good news.

A shocking number of employers believe providing no job performance feedback is perfectly acceptable.

False.  People need specific, timely feedback on how things are going.  No communication between manager and employee can lead to missed opportunities for personal growth and a high turnover rate.

4. Job boards are king.

All jobs are posted on job boards and if you apply to enough of them you will get an interview.  False.  Only 15% of jobs are filled through job boards, and the rest are filled through referrals, recruiters, networking, and so on.  Job boards attract a lot of resumes, those resumes are most often sifted through an applicant tracking system, and your resume may or may not make it to the hiring manager.  Your best bet as a job seeker or hiring manager is to develop a strong relationship with a specialized recruiter in your space and network like crazy – both online and in person.

5. What if we train them and they leave?

There is an internet meme that has been shared thousands of times on LinkedIn.  It goes as follows…

8 Hiring Myths 2
Still, some believe strongly in the former; that there is no point in investing resources in training people since they might leave with their training.  False.  This is short-sighted for any business, plain and simple.  Employees need to feel like they’re growing and developing or one of two things will happen:

They stay, but are disengaged (going through the motions, working for the weekend).

You lose them to a better opportunity.

6. We need a unicorn.

Some business leaders believe there is such thing as the8 Hiring Myths 3 “perfect hire” with the perfect qualifications, experience, personality, and culture fit.  We call this the quest for the unicorn.  This one is mostly false. Unicorn hires are not just incredibly rare, but they can be virtually impossible to attract and move.  Sometimes it is in a company’s best interest to hire someone who hits the mark 95% rather than face the time and money cost of waiting for that unicorn.

7. We can’t hire a job-hopper.

We can’t hire the candidate because they have had too many jobs in the past few years. True and false. People today job-hop more than ever, so don’t discount a candidate until you find out why did they left the job(s)? What were the circumstances?

8. You should ask for the job in the interview.

True.  Many candidates forget or are too shy to ask for the job in the interview.  Don’t be shy.  Let the hiring manager know that you are confident you would be a great fit and let them know you want the job. You don’t get anything if you don’t ask for it.

Top of mind job search and hiring cliches can take on a life of their own, but don’t get caught up in the hype.  Do your research and always ask, “is that true?”


For more blogs like these, check out our Hiring Trends and Headhunter Insights blog categories. Also, learn more about Toronto Marketing Recruiter Catherine Lund and connect with her on LinkedIn.

IQ PARTNERS is an Executive Search & Recruitment firm with offices in Toronto and Vancouver. We help companies hire better, hire less & retain more. We have teams of specialist recruiters in Financial Services & Insurance, Marketing Communications & Media, Emerging Tech & Telecom, Consumer Goods & Retail, B2B & Industrial, Technology, Accounting & Finance, HR & Operations, 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.

Mark Rouse Marketing Recruiter

Mark Rouse

Mark leads Canada’s largest Marketing Communications & Media recruitment practice. Leveraging close to two decades of industry experience in the Marketing Services and Agency businesses, he has been responsible for hiring, developing, and retaining top talent as Vice-President with companies such as Young & Rubicam, Wunderman, and J. Walter Thompson.

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