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What 'Non-Negotiable' Should Mean for Job Seekers

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by Lisa Johnson

over 2 years ago

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I had someone ask me recently what it is about recruitment that I love.  Where do I start? I expect some of you are going think that my first point will be that I like to help people.  That's not actually the main attraction; to be honest, helping people is a causal effect of my job, not the primary reason that I do it. The real driver for me is the variety.  No two days are ever the same, because no two people are ever the same.  And when you are dealing with people, there is always a story to tell. Today's story is a tale of a man who wanted a job...even it wasn't the right job. 

Three times that week, the man called us about one particular vacancy.  He had great technical accounting skills and knew he could do the job.  But here is the problem: the job was with a start up business staffed with expat Chinese professionals.  

They need someone fluent in a Chinese dialect in the role to ensure that communication is seamless and effective.  Bilingual skills are essential. The first time he called, the consultant explained this to the candidate.  

The second time the candidate called, the consultant explained this to the candidate.  

The third time the candidate called, the consultant explained this to the candidate. There can be any number of requirements for a job.  Some are negotiable, and some are not.  In this case, the language requirement was essential; we had no room for movement.  

Because the candidate only speaks English, we could not present him for the role. When you're looking for a job, when you talk to a consultant, LISTEN to them.  

They will have no problem detailing the nice to haves vs the essentials for the role.  Sometimes you are going to tick all of the boxes, and sometimes you are not.  When you don't meet all the requirements, and when you lack an absolutely essential skill, there is no point asking again and again to be put forward for the job.

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