Kill Your Lame Job Postings With Stories

There’s an old maxim good writers live by: “Show, don’t tell.” Why? Because a story enriched with texture and detail, is far more memorable than a dry recitation of facts.

In the internet age, more and more of that showing is done by video. It won’t be much longer before video will be the driver of internet traffic.

Which leads to this declaration: “Your Jobs Are Dynamic. Your Job Postings Are Lame.” That’s what Elena Valentine called her Chicago DisruptHR plea to slay Lame, the job post monster.  With bullet points and scary job descriptors, “He turns your people and your stories into a truly uninspiring black of boring.”

Fight back with pictures, with people. “Turn your job post into a job story,” she pleads. It’s not just that a video is more interesting. No, says Valentine, CEO & co-founder of Skill Scout. There’s science behind it, she explains; 80% of the brain’s processing power is given over to visual; people recall 65% of what they hear and see.

Show off your people; have them tell their story, she says. When you put these stories together it shows what your culture is; “what makes you unique.”

Valentine doesn’t promise that doing this is easy. “So my HR Bravehearts, this is an uphill battle because you have Lame whispering in your ear how easy it would be to grab last year’s job post.”

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But, as you’ll discover in what possibly may be the most energetic 5 minute exhortation to kill off those dull, uninspiring job postings, the rewards will be flocking of candidates, excited to work for you.

Note: In partnership with DisruptHR, TLNT presents some of the best Disrupt presentations from events across North America and now the world. Disrupt talks are modeled on the TEDx concept: Short, to the point talks on all things HR — talent, culture and technology.

DISRUPT is an information exchange designed to energize, inform and empower people in the HR field.

Founded by Disrupt's CEO Jennifer McClure, events are organized by volunteer teams working with Disrupt staff who assist in the planning. Events have a maximum of 14 speakers, who get 5 minutes and no more than 20 slides for their presentation.

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2 Comments on “Kill Your Lame Job Postings With Stories

  1. Elena Valentine provides data and passion to support a concept now made completely practical by technology accessible to the masses through the increased availability of mobile communications, broad user (candidate) acceptance and lower production costs for employers. Telling a story through demonstrative, highly-engaging video enhances a job requisition (posting) message into a persuasive presentation completely unique to your company. No two companies look or act completely alike; but so many (though not all) written job descriptions unfortunately have become redundant and counterproductive. To excel in providing an excellent candidate experience from the moment in which most likely the candidate is having their first exposure to your company, prioritize the utilization of video for your company’s recruitment initiatives. To extend the return on your investment and maintain an open line of communication with your future, current and past employees, extend the use of video for on-boarding, training, referral programs, employee recognition projects, employer branding campaigns and other forms of external and internal employment-related communications.

  2. This is so well-said! Employers often think that by adding buzzwords to their job descriptions, they’re taking out the lame-factor, but it really just hurts their chances. It’s too overdone and lowers their SEO. Telling a story through pictures and videos is an awesome way to bring in the right talent that meshes with the company’s values and goals for the future! I think as long as you use the right, straight-forward keywords for SEO purposes (see:, this could be a great tactic. You can also add these creative media on your careers site rather than the job description! Thanks for sharing.

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