In today’s job market, it’s more important than ever to put your best foot forward when attracting your ideal candidate. With the national unemployment rate at the lowest point in history (3.5% as of the December 2019 Bureau of Labor and Statistics Report), let’s face it: all the good ones are taken. First-rate talent is not out actively seeking new roles, unless of course their current employer is overlooking their value or creating a toxic culture.

The days of posting your job to the top 3 search engines and waiting for your model employee to walk into your life are … nonexistent.

Here’s 3 tips to get crème de la crème on YOUR payroll:

GO FIND THEM

Head hunt the person you want. Get creative. Spend hours on LinkedIn and Facebook if you need to. Depending on the type of role you are hiring, pay attention when you are out and about. It’s a huge boost to an individual’s confidence to be sought out … and who doesn’t want to work for someone who makes them feel better about themselves?

One of the best hires I never made was a guy at the car wash right down the street from my office. In my current role, I’m always looking for high caliper entry-level talent. I know the attributes and qualities and core competencies of the role where we have the highest turnover, and I’m laser focused when I’m out and about in my community, watching out for the hustlers. This particular guy was jovial AF; I NEVER saw him without a smile on his face and without hustle in his step. THIS is the kind of guy I want working for me! Yet, I didn’t start the dialogue. This nagging feeling went on for months, and I ignored it; until I couldn’t anymore. But when I finally opened my mouth and told him that I had a job opening and I thought he would be perfect for the role; he informed me that he’d just been promoted to management. Of. Freaking. Course. The gift that keeps on giving: procrastination. I will forever regret not talking to that young man the first time I noticed the attributes in him that aligned so well with my ideal employee. I lost a unicorn. Keep your eyes open, always be watching who impresses you, who treats YOU like gold, and don’t hesitate to seek out the top talent, even at their current place of employment. #NoShame.

STAND OUT.

The best way you can do this starts with your job posting. Put yourself in your candidate’s shoes; one of the most excruciating experiences of the job hunt is reading the mindless drudgery of job descriptions. This is the FIRST place you can stand out and make a name for yourself as an employer. Avoid the temptation to use all the big words to make your listing sound uber-important. This doesn’t work anymore. Be real. Be Authentic. Be different. Sound fun and interesting and stop sounding like everyone else. Put out a vibe that gives insight to your culture. Today, more and more employees are considering jobs based on the culture of the organization and more specifically, the team. Increasingly, people are unwilling to come to a job where the environment is undesirable and stuffy (and doesn’t that perfectly exemplify most job descriptions you read?). They’re looking for something “not the norm”. Be that! Start with their first impression: the job posting.

LEVEL UP YOUR INTERVIEW EXPERIENCE.

Create an experience that when they walk out the door, they can’t get you out of their head. Most interview experiences could use a jolt of “excitement” and a HUGE reduction of “stuffy”. YOU need BRING IT: to be on your A-GAME. In continuation of the previous point, people are looking for something unique, they’re looking for a feeling, a culture, an environment that they crave being a part of. What they want is a life where they wake up and look forward to coming into work or putting forth their best effort in the name of something bigger than themselves. If you don’t paint that visual for them in their interview experience; you’re just ANOTHER for them to decide between when they get the offer. If you want to attract mediocre, provide a mediocre interview experience. Sell THEM on YOU. An important point to make here. This is a great way of weeding out individuals that will not fit your team or your culture. If you have an intentional culture that you actually practice, communicate that culture very clearly in the interview process. If your ideal employee is in the room, they’ll be blown away at the vision to be a part of that. If what you describe doesn’t stir up excitement and desire to belong, then they’re probably not your ideal employee. You might have just dodged a bullet. 

You know what they say about the definition of insanity. If you’re doing the same thing trying to attract the best individuals to your team, try something different. You might just find YOUR unicorn.

If you want my guide to the ultimate interview experience, including my favorite interview questions, click here: CO’s Ultimate Interview Guide