TalentEgg Trends

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Tag: tips and tricks

How Are You Helping to Build the Workplace Critical Skills Pipeline?

When describing what differentiates top talent amongst students and new graduate candidates, we often find ourselves referencing their ‘soft’ or workplace critical skills.  Things like creativity, teamwork, critical thinking, problem solving, and leadership.

As employers, we seemingly all want these skills to be a part of the candidate profile for our new graduate programs, summer internships, or open positions on campus.  And, if the expectation is that students come prepared with these skills when they arrive in the workplace, I wonder how can we as career educators and campus recruiters help students to identify, acquire, and nurture them before they land their first job?

For me, the approach is two-fold:

I think it starts with helping students to become fluent in the art of articulation, reflection, and offering up evidence.

Let’s work an example – communication skills. We know that having a student simply state they are a good communicator is not enough.  Rather, it’s how they demonstrate they are a good communicator through examples or description that sets them apart.

Fellow campus recruiters, I am offering up a challenge to you here.  Let’s commit to trying to better articulate our needs. Continuing with the ‘good communication skills’ example, what if we said something like this in our postings:

‘Persuasive business writing, active listening, comfort delivering critical or difficult messages, and strong presentation skills are essential for successful communication in our organization’.

The more specific or articulate we are, the more a student has got to work with and reflect on.  They can start to assess whether they have demonstrated these skills and attributes in their studies or work to date, come up with evidence to support it, and if a gap exists, have a clearer goal to work towards.  If  Year 1 students knew what you were truly looking for in terms of workplace critical skills when they embarked on their program, think about where they might be by the time they graduate.  Perhaps ‘top talent’ would be more plentiful?

While these notions are by no means new, it stands to reason that by providing students with ample opportunity to reflect on and to talk about their skills in meaningful ways (whether it is a part of their experiential learning, course work, co-op, or even workshops) the more comfortable and confident they will become in talking about their workplace critical skills as potential candidates.

The second piece is all about providing additional opportunities to develop and nurture workplace critical skills while in school.  Case competitions, challenges, portfolios or workplace critical skills passports, skills badging, and experiential learning are all great ways to achieve this.  Think about how you can get more involved in these types of initiatives.  While yes, the time investment does need to be there to make it most effective, you will be doing wonders for your credibility, brand, and building up of the pipeline of the skills you’re ultimately wanting students to have in their toolkit.

Challenge yourself.  In your next round of engaging students – how will you help them to get really good at articulating, reflecting, and evidencing their workplace critical skills?  What opportunities will you provide to develop and nurture them?  Happy skill building!

 


Trevor Buttrum is an award-winning career education and campus recruitment leader with 15+ years of experience in the space.  He is currently the manager of a national program focused on building the talent pipeline for the next generation of the property and casualty insurance workforce.

 

Your Complete Guide to Canadian Campus Recruitment

The eighth annual TalentEgg National Campus Recruitment Excellence Awards and Conference took place on Wednesday, June 19th, 2019 and we are happy to say that it was an egg-cellent day of learning and collaborating on best practices in student, new graduate and early career recruitment. The TalentEgg Awards and Conference marks a moment when employers, nonprofits, campus recruitment professionals, and career educators come together for a day to discuss different approaches to support youth employment and professional development. We would like to sincerely thank everyone who joined us for the event, and we can't wait to see you next year!

All Awards and Conference attendees got to take home our 2019 Guide to Canadian Campus Recruitment. This valuable resource gives employers and HR professionals crucial insights into recruiting Gen-Y and Gen-Z job candidates, including best practices, tips on how to use social media effectively, and what matters most to students, new graduates and early career professionals when it comes to starting their careers.

If you missed out on the conference, you can still access TalentEgg's key findings from our Gen-Y and Gen-Z research and recruitment insights gained from our work with the Student Judges of the TalentEgg Awards! We’re offering a free digital download of the 2019 Guide to Canadian Campus Recruitment right here!

Here’s a sneak peek of what you’ll find in the 2019 Guide:

  • Candidates' recruitment pet peeves
  • Why your employer brand needs CSR
  • Unique experiences to develop your future talent pipeline
  • Connecting with early-career professionals
  • Why and how to connect online with potential candidates
  • How your recruitment efforts can be everywhere, all at once
  • The importance of continuous learning and incorporating it into your onboarding
  • …and more!

Get your free copy of this essential resource!


2019 Guide to Canadian Campus Recruitment

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3 Signs That A Candidate Has Lost Interest During An Interview (And How To Address The Situation)

There’s at least a few moments in any recruiter’s career when they realize that a candidate has lost complete interest during the interview.

It’s not always obvious – chances are, they don’t want to offend you (especially if they’re a student or new grad) so they won’t make a show of it. After all, it doesn’t make sense to burn bridges. So the next time you feel the feeling you’re losing them, look out for these 3 signs.

1. They’re not physically engaged

They may be saying all the right things, but if their body language says “I’m bored (or worse, “get me out of here!”), then you need to take steps to reel them back in.

Observe them – are they making eye contact? Slouched? Are they not smiling? Compare their behaviour to when the interview began. If there’s a noticeable difference, it should set off a red flag.

2. They’re giving short(er) answers

Most students and grads are eager to give in-depth answers about their experiences. And while there are some that may become nervous and give you short answers, there will be some that are clearly giving you bullet-points on their experience in hopes that the engagement will end sooner.

This may not last the entire meeting. Pay attention to which questions they answer in a shortened manner – it may be in response to something that they’re not comfortable with, or they’re feeling hesitant about.

3. They’re talking about other opportunities they’re considering

They’re not necessarily doing it in a patronizing manner – most likely, this will sound something along the lines of “I just want to make you aware that I’m considering a few other job opportunities.”

It’s a tactic that some students or grads use to try and soften the blow on recruiters when they are feeling hesitant about a job they’re interviewing for. The idea is that if they make the recruiter aware that they’re being considered elsewhere, it won’t sting so much when they finally turn them down.

Solution: Get to the root of the problem

It’s disheartening when you realize that the young professional in front of you in much less invested in taking the role than you are. And while it’s easy to start questioning yourself (was it something I said??), it’s important to identify why they are exhibiting these signs.

While there are times when the circumstances are out of your control (i.e. it’s not the right fit, they cannot commit to certain components of the role, etc.), there are times when you may be able to clarify any misunderstandings and get things back on track.

1. Give them the floor: If you give your candidate a safe space to voice their concerns, you can react accordingly. Be sure not to approach this situation in a patronizing manner – be understanding, and perhaps start the conversation with a phrase like, “I was hoping to get some feedback from you – is there anything about this position that you have any concerns about?” Position yourself so that they know you’re asking because you want to make sure they feel this position is the right fit so that both parties will be happy with the outcome.

2. Listen, don’t judge: This is more tricky than it sounds – pay attention to your posture, expressions, and reactions to make sure you’re not giving off an aura of judgement. Asking a student or grad to voice their concerns can make them feel like they’re in a vulnerable position, and you don’t want to make them feel like they’re being backed into a corner. If you’ve build a strong rapport with your candidate in advance, it will be easier to address concerns like these.

3. Address concerns: Having students and grads voice their concerns puts you in a prime position to address them. As mentioned above, sometimes their concerns are out of your hands. But if their concerns are within your control, or a misunderstanding/miscommunication, then take steps to correct it. Going out of your way to make sure they have the right info shows your candidate that you’re looking out for them, and you’re willing to go above and beyond to make sure they’re well informed.

Discussion: If a candidate has visibly lost interest during an interview, do you feel it is worth pursuing?

 

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