Hiring Wisdom: Be Careful When You Set Employee Expectations

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I’m a longtime advocate of how important it is for employers to tell the absolute truth in the hiring process.

When you tell promising applicants the difficult or unpleasant parts of the job up front, the person can opt out and save you a lot of money now, instead of costing you a bunch later when they find out and decide to leave you high and dry.

However, the downside of the job needs to be balanced and kept in perspective.

Setting right expectations

If you only tell applicants, “We work hard every day,” guess what? They’ll find the work very hard; maybe even too hard. That’s when they start looking for something less physically and/or mentally demanding.

To screen in people willing to work hard, and screen out those who are not, it could be better said like this:

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The work is much more physically demanding than a desk job, but it’s great exercise in interesting locations, with a team that knows how to have fun while getting the job done.

This was originally published on Mel Kleiman’s Humetrics blog.

Mel Kleiman, CSP, is an internationally-known authority on recruiting, selecting, and hiring hourly employees. He has been the president of Humetrics since 1976 and has over 30 years of practical experience, research, consulting and professional speaking work to his credit. Contact him at mkleiman@humetrics.com.


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