Register Here! Jobvite/FOT Hangout Series > Getting Ready for the Jan 2018 Hiring Rush

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Hey Gang! 

Join me, Kris Dunn and Jobvite for another great installment of The Recruiter Nation Live Hangout Series! Our next hangout is at 1pm ET on December 14th (this Thursday!).   We’ll discuss the very timely topic:  GETTING READY FOR THE JANUARY HIRING RUSH.


The hangout is an informal thing – we fire up the video and a few slides (emphasis on “few”) and run through a few things in 20-25 minutes.  Kris and I will spread some holiday cheer, delivering recruiting tips to get your team ready for the January recruiting rush. In this hangout we’ll discuss THE GOOD STUFF:

 –How to build your internal and external recruiting “posse” for 2018. 

–What year-end “house-cleaning” (especially within your technology platforms/ATS) must be done to start 2018 with a clean slate. 

–How to partner with your executives and hiring managers to get great results – together. 

–What reporting would help you manage expectations and influence your internal clients to recognize the great work you’re doing?


See you there! 



More on the Jobvite Recruiter Nation Live Series.

If you’re a client or follower of Jobvite, you know the Recruiter Nation Live series.  It started with the Recruiter Nation Live Conference in San Francisco last June, and continued with the Recruiter Nation Live Roadshow that brought real recruiter talk to 9 cities in North America over the last three months.

The feedback was great – you loved it, so we’re back with the latest in the series – the Recruiter Nation Live Hangout Series, hosted by Fistful of Talent and me.  Once a month, FOT will host a live Hangout designed to keep the conversation among recruiters going – focused on things you can use, like the best-kept secrets of today’s smartest and most efficient recruiters, Jedi-mind tricks proven to make you more persuasive/get great candidate response and strategies to hold your hiring managers accountable for their choices–so everyone wins.

#Hamilton files: Good HR Recruiters should hire a Theatre Major


“Great theatre is about challenging how we think and encouraging us to fantasize about a world we aspire to.”  — Willem Dafoe

Sounds like how high-performance teams must work now.  Let me tell you why.

I finally saw Hamilton in Chicago.  OMG.  My theatre nerd came out of me in all directions.

I got tickets as a Christmas present, so have been anticipating the greatness that is Hamilton for 8 months.  It was worth the wait.  I’ve had  the soundtrack for months, I know the lyrics and obviously knows how it ends.  With that in mind, I felt certain there wouldn’t be tears as I watched.  Wrong — at the end I was holding back a semi-ugly cry and at one point I started welling up because the production quality was just so good.

As I watched, I thought, if these guys didn’t make it in Theatre, what would their profession be?  I for one would hire them.  Why?  Let me tell you why… most were theatre majors, or in the very least learned professionalism through working in the theatre.

We often hear managers make leadership and teamwork references to sports.  My God! Enough already.  Expand your horizons and think differently.  Frankly, the same analogies can be made for those in Theatre.  Traits for those lucky enough to be in Theatre include:

Commitment: Theatre folks of all disciplines, from actor to director to lighting technician have to dedicate large amounts of time to rehearsing, auditioning, and keeping relevant.  If they flake, a show could be jeopardized.  I mean, there is no “not showing up” or “I’m feeling sick today”, or “my throat hurts”… you show up or someone will take your place.

A quest to be the best:  Theatre professionals have no choice.  The market is too full, competition is fierce and yes, there is no-cap on personal ambition.  No one can tolerate a bad production.  Or a patronizing clap.  Anathema.  Hubris.

Ability to take rejection:  A part of the quest to be great in the theatre means getting OK with rejection.  A lot of it.  This translates well in the professional world as well.  I mean, have you worked in the corporate world?  Jesus, enough said.

Teamwork:  Putting on a class-A production requires many separate teams to collaborate daily, through the entire rehearsal process and production.  This can be 3 months to many years. If the costumes don’t match the vision of the director, if the lights don’t actually follow the actors or enhance the mood of the play, if the sound technician forgets his cues and mics the wrong actor, if the guy who pulls the curtain up and down at the right time jacks it up, if actors forget anything, especially when not to stand in front of pyrotechnics, not only is it dangerous, but the production is screwed.

Ability to have each other’s back:  If a light cue does go wrong or an actor forgets their lines, the show must go on.  Other members must seamlessly “have their back”  and just like sports teams, all must trust the others have their back.

Ability to give away the spotlight to others:  Scenes only work when performers know when it is time to “give” the scene to their partner.  This means, it is appropriate for the actor to step back, focus attention on the other, and listen.  Sounds like a high-performance team, right?


Have passion and purpose:  Folks in the theatre have passion for what they do.  If they did not, theatre would not be worth it.  The life is too hard.  Also, sorry, without passion an actor just isn’t an actor (or a good actor). And passion and purpose are big motivators to the modern workforce.  Win.

What does an actor in the workplace need from leaders: 

  • Continuous feedback
  • Praise when deserved 
  • To be heard

So, if you are one who love to hire athletes, you should flip your script and hire those in the fine arts.  Not only will you have folks that work well in high-performance teams, but you also may have someone who can entertain you daily, which in today’s workforce certainly can’t hurt.


Want Affordable, Effective Workers Fast: Hire “Brandless” Employees.

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Companies and agencies are continuously trying to find the “holy grail” of talent:  New hires who can do the job well and come at an affordable salary. As an HR pro, I don’t know how many times I’ve been told by hiring managers to find the best talent for the cheapest price possible.  Unfortunately, there have been a few problems with this equation, namely:

  • Managers aren’t sure what “doing the job well” is.
  • Managers believe candidates are worth less than they are told.
  • Candidates believe they are worth more than they really are.
  • Candidates who do know what they are worth try to negotiate for much higher.
  • There are too many candidates to choose from, primarily due to electronic means of advertising jobs and applying for jobs.

The outcome can be a lengthy, expensive recruiting process due to too many interviews, too many decision makers, and salary ranges that are based on a negotiation game.

The Potential Solve:  Go “Brandless”.

Hey Gang:  Read the rest of my post (and lots of other great stuff) at Fistful Of Talent



Burke Bedside Chat: Can I Discriminate Against Boring People?

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Every Tuesday I conduct my Burke Bedside Chat live on Facebook.  It’s me and my trusted side-kick, hubby Bo Burke, sitting in bed doing what old-people do…we go to bed early and talk about random stuff on Facebook. Live.

Along with talking about po-boys, Hamilton, Pokemon, mushroom villages and football, I naturally throw in HR, Leadership, Recruiting, and Talent Management Stuff.  

If you want to join in– hit me up on Facebook.  Message me “Burke Bedside Chat” and I’ll set you up.

This week’s question:  Can I Discriminate Against Boring People?  If I’m interviewing you and can hardly keep my eyes open, can I disqualify you?  If you submit a video interview and I’m feeling my head nod, can I say sayonara? If you talk in monotone Lurch-style for the entirety of your interview, can I give you the hook?

Lot’s of people chimed in.  To see what they said, and to hear about grits, green beans and other things— check it out.

Wanna Screw Up Engagement > Multi-task During a Call

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Wanna suck the life out of your engagement strategy.  I mean really take your engagement credibility to new lows.  Multi-task while you are on the phone.

You know what will immediately make your employees think you don’t care…the sound of your clicking keyboard. When you are talking to someone. During a scheduled call.

Since I’ve been around the block a time or two, it really doesn’t bother me too much anymore.  If I hear a clicking keyboard when someone is talking with me, I just say let’s reschedule.  I certainly have lots of other things to do, so I don’t sweat it.  But imagine if you are an employee who has finally scheduled some precious time with you, Sr. Leader.  If you don’t think they’ve been nervous about that call, you may may need to come back down to the Trenches.  They call you, they are prepped, and then they hear the click of your keyboard.  Then they feel… well, not angry, and likely not sad… but just, like a schmuck.

Or imagine you are a candidate and you hear the sound of a clicking keyboard during your interview.  The interview your’ve been sweating for 2 weeks.  The one that is for the dream job you’ve been coveting.  That sound totally sucks.  Then they think you totally suck. Then they think your company totally sucks.  And you know what – they’re right.

I’ll give all of you a break — it is super easy to do this unintentionally.  I know most  mean nothing by it, that is why it doesn’t bother me so much when it happens to me.  And frankly, I’d be a complete liar if I said I have never done this.  BUT….

If someone heard my keyboard clicking over the phone, especially if I was interviewing them or if they really needed my advice as a Sr. Leader or if they had prepped for my time, no matter what the reason — I suck.

Pragmatic HR Tip >  If you feel you still have the right to suck by multi-tasking, or if for some reason multi-tasking it is prudent:  MUTE YOUR FRIGGIN’ PHONE.