ATLANTIC RESEARCH TECHNOLOGIES, L.L.C. Senior Management Executive Search & Recruitment Worldwide
Post by Bob
Otis, ART Managing Director
Date Posted: July 21, 2023
Your Career and Your Family
When headhunting a candidate for a client, what a simpler job it would be if I only needed to take into account the person's job title, salary, and location and then only improve on those points! I have learned, however, that the best and most long-lasting candidate-employer matches result from the harder work of better understanding the larger needs of a person. Two people with very similar educational backgrounds, job experiences, salary requirements and locations might look at the same job as a dream job or as hell on earth. It's these personal differences that make us human, and if a human recruiter takes the human part out of the executive search equation, then that recruiter is not doing his or her job well for anyone.
am shy about inquiring about a potential candidate's
life beyond their work experiences. I respect a person's
privacy and I really do not want to know anything about
a candidate's personal life if I can help it. But when I
present a job to a candidate, I do believe that I owe it
to the candidate to not just encourage them to look at
my client's job as if it were in a sterile Petri dish. I
feel that I should suggest also that the person consider
their new life if they worked for my client. Would your
life be better? What about the people around you that
you care about? Would things be better for them or
worse? So one of the first questions I usually ask is:
this job impact people in your family, including the
careers of a spouse, partner, or the lives of children
or other family members? I ask that not to pry into
people's lives, but instead to jump-start the
candidate's thoughts about possible problems that might
ensue, related to the new job. Their thought process
might last two seconds, when I might be told that a job
change would be a non-starter due to family reasons.
Alternatively, opening that line of thought might be the
beginning of a larger and very meaningful conversation
between the candidate and those people who are important
to that person. The result might be a turn-down of my
client's offer, but that is always better than quitting
one's job, taking another job and then quitting again.
worst situation that I have seen is when a
candidate decides to not tell the loved ones about a
call from a headhunter regarding a job opportunity, and
then the candidate goes on several interviews. gets a
great job offer and only at the eleventh hour decides to
spring that news on family members. Something like: "I
have great news! I just got a new job offer in another
city (or country) and it means a significant career
boost for me."
I think that I could understand why some people might not want to discuss such things until they had an offer in hand, but that always seems to me to be a dangerous or at least a less desirable way to go. At the very least, the other parties might feel left out of such an important process. They might feel that there was a simple breach of trust, leaving the other parties feeling unimportant. There could be unspoken tensions when the candidate might be happy and excited about the new job offer while the loved ones might effectively feel silenced from voicing possible negatives that might affect that person's situation.
It is not the easiest thing to balance one's family responsibilities with one's career. If you are a two-career family, or if your school-age children are involved in your career planning, you might feel that your options to leave your present position or location are limited. That is not necessarily the case. In many cases, if one's loved ones are given tangible options that can be thoughtfully analyzed, they might not only prove to be accepting of your new job offer and/or relocation, but they might feel personally better off if you made that move.
your compensation is enhanced, that would certainly help
you save for your children's schooling, and you might be
able to afford a better home. With better benefits
at another firm you might be able to have a more
comfortable retirement. The best strategy is to
include your family members into your job-search
strategy as members of your team. They might have good
ideas and suggestions that could assist you in making
your final decision following a job offer.
often scares people who have children in
school. But children are amazingly resilient, and a
broadening of personal experiences can prove to be
enriching to their lives. They likely can make
friends in another town, too.
If one's spouse or partner is happily employed locally, a relocation may seem like an unfair burden, but often, both spouses can find better opportunities in a new location if they open themselves up to change and explore specific options for that person.The goal is for there to be a win-win situation for all parties.