What’s it all Worth?

 

A business coach who often coaches top executives told me this tale:

It happens quite often that when I coach top leaders, they end up realizing that while they have indeed achieved all the outward signs of success, they’re just not happy at work or in life. They have the corner office, company Mercedes, million dollar salary and stock options. But ask the right questions, and it turns out that many of them are lonely and lost. Their work brings them no joy, it holds no meaning and creates no positive, lasting relationships. It also takes up all their time and keeps them away from their family and friends.

One well-known top leader broke down crying over the realization, that most of his work life had been wasted on chasing money and power. Soon after, he quit his job and is now doing work he enjoys – at 1/10 the pay.

This begs the question: What is success worth, if it doesn’t make you happy?

The Dalai Lama once said:

I believe that the very purpose of our life is to seek happiness. That is clear. Whether one believes in religion or not, whether one believes in this religion or that religion, we all are seeking something better in life. So I think the very motion of our life is towards happiness…

All of this applies to your life work, and I believe that we are seeing a new approach to work emerge. Where previously work was something we did to earn a living, in the future, the point of going to work, is to be happy.

So should you just be happy and forget about success? This is where it gets interesting: Recently a group of researchers published the results of a meta-study. A meta-study is a study that combines the result of a lot of other studies done in a specific field, and this meta-study combined 225 studies in happiness that had examined the lives of 225.000 people.

The researchers concluded that while success does make you happier, there is an even stronger correlation that happiness will make you successful. Research shows that happy people are more optimistic, outgoing, likable, motivated and energetic – all essential qualities for business success.

No one really has to sacrifice happiness for the sake of success – a common assumption today. In fact, the opposite is true: The happier you are, the more successful you’re likely to be.

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Love & Work Part II

Who are you?

Hello, what do you do?

Just a few decades ago people had many sources of identity: Religion, class, nationality, political affiliation, family roots, geographical and cultural origins and more. Today many of these, if not all, have been subsumed by work. When you meet someone at a party, what’s the first question you ask? “So, what do you do?”

We are increasingly defined by our work. It’s what takes up most of our time. It’s where we get to employ most of our talents. It’s where we experience our greatest triumphs and failures. It’s also the basis for our standard of living. All of this means that when work is not working for us, we become subject to depression and anxiety, and that being happy at work becomes crucial!

Mind and Body

Being unhappy at work can make you sick and being happy at work can make you well again. This sounds like an unlikely claim at first, but it’s really very true.

Lancaster University and Manchester Business School performed a study in 2005 involving 250,000 employees which found that low happiness at work is a risk factor for mental health problems, including emotional burn-out, low self-esteem, anxiety and depression. The report warned that just a small drop in job satisfaction could lead to burnout of “considerable clinical importance”.

Mental stress symptoms like the ones found in the study also increase the risk of physical health problems including ulcers, heart problems and a generally weakened immune system. Martin Seligman found the same thing in his positive psychology studies, in which he concluded that optimists are healthier and live longer than pessimists.

So not only are people who’re happy at work happier – they’re also healthier.

Part III is coming up soon, stay tuned…

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Love and Work

The Wellsprings of Life are Love & Work, but in what order?

Man travelling for Work

When I got my first professional position, I worked a lot of hours in the name of success. I’d moved for that opportunity, far away from my friends and family, but that was fine: I didn’t really have time for a life. My main goal was excelling at work! There was no time for love and friendship, in this unbalanced existence.

After a while, I realized something: I was successful, certainly, and I made good money. But I was not happy. I was in fact feeling lonely. All I ever did was work. I decided it was better to work in a way that would make me happy. I cut back on work and started spending time outdoors, making friends and participating in sports. My life changed completely. Where my evenings consisted of commuting from work, some fast food and lots of TV, I now had new friends, interesting hobbies and I was in the best shape of my life. I also lost 20 pound from eating better and exercising.

Think about it: You will spend more of your adult life on your job than on anything else, except possibly sleep. Your work will take up more of your time than your family, friends and hobbies combined. Won’t it be nicer if that time is spent at a job that actually makes you happy?

The Role of Work in your Life

Thomas Hobbes said life is “nasty, brutish and short” and concluded that work is hell but we must endure it because we’re all sinners. We get our reward once we’re dead.

Maybe it’s time to put that particular view of work behind us.

Some people have the ability to have a lousy day at work and to then go home and be happy as if nothing has happened. I can’t do this. When I have a rough day at work, it ruins the rest of my evening.

It is easy to accept a job that makes you unhappy, because the way it changes you can sneak up on you very gradually. Think about it – did you use to be happy, outgoing and energetic, and lost that somewhere? The explanation could be found at work and many people find that having a job that makes them happy gives them energy and zest for life.

Stay tuned for part 2 of this article…


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Facebook Remorse?

Will Gen Y feel Remorse for their Facebook Pages?

When we think candidate’s Facebook pages, we’re thinking about beer bong pictures and other adolescent behaviors that tell us if the candidate has basic character and discretion. Don’t we?

We’re certainly not thinking about predictive analytics designed to guess the probability of disease, pregnancy and the health issues  like alcoholism and migraines.  But if you think about what’s going on with big data these days, why wouldn’t that happen?

Read this and consider:

Candidate A’s resumé rose to the top because of LinkedIn Expert, the social network’s high-end professional service. LinkedIn developed technology to data-mine resumés for specific qualifications. Candidate A’s research on trade disputes between Korea and the USA caught everyone’s interest at a top technology consulting company. That’s why her “3D Resumé”  rose up to the top of the candidate pile.

The hiring manager does this pitch:

“She’s what you need for the transpacific trade issues you had mentioned. Her dissertation speaks for itself, she even learned Korean…”

He pauses.

“But?…” Asks the HR guy.

“She’s afflicted with acute migraine. It occurs a couple of times a month. She conceals it, but our data shows it could be problemlatic.”

“How did you learn that?”

“Well, she falls into this particular Health Cluster. In her Facebook wall, she sometimes refers to a spike in her sensitivity towards smells — a precursor to a migraine headache. In addition, each two weeks, we see a drop in the number of words she uses in Facebook posts, her vocabulary diminishes, and her tweets, usually sharp, become less articulate. That’s an obvious pattern for people suffering from serious migraine. In addition, the Zeo Sleeping Manager website and the stress management site HeartMath — both now connected with Facebook –  suggest she suffers from insomnia. In other words, we think you can’t take her into the firm. Our Predictive Workforce Analytics Modeling shows that she will cost you at least 20% more in lost days and productivity. Not to mention the patterns in her Facebook posts suggest a 60% chance for her to become pregnant in the next 12 months, according to our predictive models.”

“Not exactly a 100% certainty, but OK, let’s move to the next candidate”.

You might think I’m exaggerating with this tableau. But the fictitious Company could be using existing large quantitative research firms, combined semantic and data-mining information resources such as Recorded Future. This Sweden-based company, which has a branch in the USA,  provides real time analysis of thousands of sources (news services, social networks, blogs, government web sites). The firm offers clients the ability to predict a vast array of events (see this Wired story).

  • Do we fully understand the impact of big data and HR? Probably, we do not. Are predictive analytic techniques that speak to the possibility of a candidate’s insomnia and migraines crooked cards?
  • Is it right or is it wrong?  This is a probability score index.  Perhaps this index was modeled to give you a productivity and “ability to complete projects on time” score rather than talking about health issues.  Perhaps, the ability to be creative is under scrutiny?  Would that be more useful to Human Resources?
  • What if one used a Psychology professional rather than metrics alone to give the hiring company access to plausible deniability?
  • We would guess that high-end firms that already use this type of service will be the first to try predictive analytics in the hiring process. Perhaps we will eventually see the many uses of analytics litigated out in the courts.
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Talent Management

How to Go About Predicting Performance in Talent Management

Employee PerformanceThere are problems in using “predictors” of suitability for open positions within a company. Hunter and Hunter (1984) showed that interviewing is one of the worst predictors of future job performance.  Using reference checks (.26), education (.22) or biographical data (.37) did not improve the odds too favorably. In fact, even the best predictor, test scores, came out at .57.  We could make the argument that in order to be able to best predict future job performance of a candidate, several methods should be used. Hunter, J.E. and Hunter, R.F. 1984. “Validity and utility of alternative predictors of job performance”. .Psychological Bulletin. 96:72-98

Others studies showed that structured interviews having a maximum validity coefficient of .24, which is certainly better. One of the most-embraced contemporary personality assessments, the Big 5, was found in Mount and Barrick’s 1995 study to have a coefficient of .18 for Conscientiousness. That is acceptable but not all that good.

In the USA, we can be worried about the legality of personality assessments in employment decisions. “Griggs v. Duke Power” found that personality assessments must show “a manifest relationship to the employment in question” and that it is up to the employer to show the relationship. In employing a several methods, you should conduct a job analysis to establish job relevance (as required by the Griggs decision, and by other legal precedents).  The appropriate job analysis should offer guidance to the right selection methods (such as test, interview, resume screen) as well as testing constructs (such as cognitive ability, conscientiousness, job knowledge). This job analysis is supposed to drive the selection methods and not vice versa.

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Biotech Industry

Professional Recruiter Associates works within a variety of industries. A large portion of our staff has worked in the Biotech industry in the past, and we are very familiar with the type of jobs and professionals that are involved in this industry.

Biotech Scientists at Work

Industry areas we have expertise with involve a variety of disciplines including Biotechnology, Clinical Trials, Renewable Energy Resources, and other scientific areas, which are used to develop technology that helps to improve our lives and the health of our planet. We have made placements with some of the biggest Biotech firms in the industry, and worked with biotech scientists and other scientists who possess a variety of different backgrounds. The scientist jobs available within these industries, are very specialized, and require recruiters to have a scientific background.  It takes a company which has extensive experience working with scientists in order to accurately source and place the right type of scientific candidate for biotechnology and other scientific industry positions.

Senior staff members at our firm were involved in technical industries as executives for many years before becoming Executive Search professionals. These areas include Scientific Instrumentation, Renewable Energy, and Biotechnology Clinical Trials.  We have developed networks of scientists with Renewable Energy and Biotech companies. We have biotechnology and energy  scientist jobs available consistently.

For a listing of all of our Job Orders in the Biotech Industry, feel free to view our website.

[button link=”http://profrecruiters.com/candidates.php?class=0″ color=”lightblue” newwindow=”yes”] Job Orders[/button]
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Our Recruiting Process

Here at Professional Recruiter Associates, we follow a very simple process in order to do our Recruiting. We separate it into 6 different steps.

  1. The first portion is what we called the “Information” stage. This includes us gathering information from the client as to what exactly they are looking for. We do this by researching the company, finding out about their products, their services, who do they do business with, how they like to do business, and a variety of other details which may not seem relevant but they really are. From there we find out what their “need” is. Everyone Company can use a Sales person, but what do they really need? It is our job to find that information out. From there we find out the details for the position, such as compensation, qualifications, location, and the objectives of the position. Once we have gathered as much information as we can get without being a part of the company who we are working for, we move on to step 2.
  2. The second step is to “Research”. This is different than gathering the information, because the research that we do is based off the information that we have gathered in the previous step. This can be anything from doing research on competitors of the company for which we are Recruiting for, to finding resumes using our various resources which match the information we have gathered for the position that we are filling.
  3. The 3rd step in the process is “Contact”. This includes taking the Resumes that we have compiled for the position and contacting the candidates. The candidates need to know what they are interviewing for, and we need to know if they are still interested in a new opportunity, therefore communication has to be made in order to determine whether or not the situation is right. Once we have found candidates who are interested, we have to train those candidates to understand the position for which we are having them interview for. It looks bad on the Recruiting firm as well as the candidates that we send if we do not prepare them for whats ahead. This does take time, and certain candidates are eliminated from the interview process if they choose not to take this portion of the process seriously. After we have trained our candidates and narrowed it down, it is time for step 4.
  4. Step 4 is the interview process. This portion is simple, we contact the Hiring Manager, and we set up a time for the interview between this person and the candidate that we have chosen. This portion can be very easy, or can take some time based on the type of schedules that we are looking at between the Manager and the candidate. Once the interview times are setup, we move on to the following step.
  5. The 5th part of the process is the “Selection & Negotiation” stage. This includes taking the offer that the Hiring Manager is making for the candidate and presenting this to the candidate in a way that they make the best possible decision for themselves. Obviously we would like to be able to make the placement right off the bat, with the first offer, but in a lot of instances this is not the case, sometimes the candidate needs more, or wants more, and would rather fight for more instead of caving and taking the first offer that comes into play. Realistically we serve as the middle man, due to the fact that we are providing the Hiring Manager a candidate, and most of the time they feel that we must present the offer to the candidate, sometimes, if they are really interested, they will offer it themselves, but this is quite rare. Once we have reached an agreement between both parties, we move on the final step of our process.
  6. The 6th and final step is the “Transition”. This includes assisting the candidate in beginning their career with a new company, and checking with them to make sure that things are going alright. You don’t want your candidate to be released shortly after being hired, because this does not reflect well on your firm. To be a successful Recruiter, don’t think that your job is done after the candidate is hired, we recommend that you contact your candidate even years after you have gotten them a position. You never know, maybe they have moved up in the company, and they are now in a position to hire, and you can get yourself another client, or perhaps they are unhappy and would like for you to find them another job. Either way contacting your candidates after you have found them their job is key, only positive things will come from doing this

Well there you have it, the 6 step process to being a successful Recruiter. It may sound like a lot of work, but it is actually quite fun. This process can range from a week to 6 months depending on the hiring company, and the candidates. If you enjoy working with people, and being a problem solver, being a Recruiter will definitely be something that you would enjoy. It is tedious at times, but it is a very rewarding career, and makes any future career choices seem much easier. Thank you for reading, and we hope that we were able to assist any Recruiters, and give any Hiring Companies a good idea of how we do things, and as you can see we have established a very successful and in-depth process over the years which will not fail!

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Teamwork

The main thing to consider to be successful in any part of business is teamwork. No matter where you work, you are going to have to work with a group of people to make a company successful. If you expect to be able to work alone, and you refuse to work with others, no company will want to keep you around for too long. Any successful business owner will tell you that the first and most important thing that a successful employee has to learn is how to work within a team.

There are certain Hiring Managers that will not even consider an employee unless he has proven that he has to be able to work within a team. Here at Professional Recruiter Associates, we have developed a team of Executive Recruiters who pool their resources in order to ensure business for the company. This allows us as Recruiters to share candidates, and to work on various placements together in order to fulfill the need of our clients quickly, and efficiently. Being as Recruiting is by nature a competitive industry due to the fact that it is generally commission based, any Recruiting firms who challenge their employees to work against each other do not last long.

One person can only do so much, and only has so much time and energy to spend on a certain project or order. Eventually, no matter how good you think you are at what you do, someone better will come along, and the key is to learn from this person, and work with this person in order to better yourself and the company with which you are working with. There is always that person at the office that chooses to flaunt his success in front of his co-workers, but eventually that individual always finds out that this will not get him support, but will cause his co-workers to turn on him, and if ever, this person does need their help (which he/she will), they will most likely not be able to get it.

Being in business for over 15 years in the Recruiting Industry, we have learned that working together as a team makes our individual Recruiters more successful, and therefore happy with their jobs, and makes the company as an overall more successful. We recommend this for any business venture, although we have used Recruiting as an example since this is what we do.

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Job Descriptions

Beyond Job Descriptions

 

Searching for a new employee?

Look beyond the responsibilities and experience listed on your job descriptions. Think about the traits you valued in the employee who previously held the position or of other employees within your firm.

When interviewing potential candidates, have several team members sit in on the interview process to gain a better perspective of just who you want to bring on-board. Think about the person’s personality.

  • Do you feel they might fit within the company environment?
  • How well do they communicate?
  • Do they seem to embrace questions that are asked, or do they become nervous over something they weren’t prepared to answer?
  • Do they present themselves in a professional demeanor?

Some things you just can’t ‘see’ in a resume.

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Time Management #2

Welcome back! Here is the second portion of our Time Management guide for Recruiters. To be a successful Recruiter, you have to talk to A LOT of people. This can get confusing, and can cause a person who is a good Recruiter to an unsuccessful career. By being organized, and managing your time correctly, you can be more efficient. By making simple changes to the way you do things, you will find that you can be successful without just playing a numbers game, but by organizing yourself, and contacting the right people, at the right time. Enjoy!

Plan your calls in blocks of time. Take a short break after every 5-10 calls to get refreshed before making the next set of calls. The best times to make calls are between 8 am – 11 am, and 1 pm – 4 pm as most people are at their desks during these times. However, don’t assume your candidates will be able to talk to you during these times… sometimes it will be necessary to contact them before or after normal working hours. Recruiting is not a 9-5, Monday through Friday typical job!

Use a script for calls to help you stay on task. Ask your candidates and clients what the best time is to call them so you don’t have to keep leaving messages or call back several times before reaching them. If you make business development calls, research the company…know something about it and who you need to talk to before making the call. Follow through and be persistent. Try to get as much information as possible during your first call so you don‘t need to make additional ones.

Screen your incoming calls. It is not necessary to answer the phone each time it rings. Don’t be afraid to let it go to voice mail, and make return calls once or twice during the day to help decrease interruptions.

When sourcing candidates, start with your database. Why waste time sourcing other places when you may have just the right candidate right in front of you.

Keep a file for all your job descriptions. Somewhere, sometime, you will probably need to use one of them again. Why take time writing a new one if you already have one on hand. It’s much more time consuming to write a whole new one rather than to edit an existing one.

Leave the end of your day for administrative work and making plans for the next day. Always allow time for distractions and the unexpected, such as meetings, extra-long phone calls, etc., but focus your main attention on items that need to be done daily.

Being organized helps keep you in control. Don’t procrastinate! Being responsible for your own actions help reduce stress, minimizes problems, and allows you to complete tasks on time.

Have a high expectation of yourself and you will be more apt to succeed!

Thank you for reading, and feel free to visit us again for our next article. We release a newsletter with more information about our blog, and the posts we will be releasing. If you are interested in the information that we provide, but you simply do not have the time to visit our blog continuously, sign up for our free newsletter! This will provide up to date information on our up-coming articles, new releases, updates, and promotional events. See you soon!

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