Happiness at Work – Applying positive psychology principles to the workplace

Recently, I discovered something new in the fascinating field of positive psychology.  Positive psychology is the study of happiness and how ordinary people can become happier (Psychology Today).  As a recruiter, I often wonder how jobs and job placements affect employee happiness.

While the field of positive psychology is vast, I came across Martin Seligman’s well-being theory, called PERMA-theory, and it seems to make a lot of sense applied to the workplace.  The acronym stands for five elements that can help people reach a state of happiness and fulfillment: (P) Positive Emotions, (E) Engagement, (R) Relationships, (M) Meaning and Purpose, and (A) Accomplishments.       Read More

Hiring: They Call it a “Process” for a Reason

I enjoy the hiring process.

I know it works.

I believe that each step is important in forming a complete picture.

In my years of experience as an executive recruiter, I have seen the value of following a step-by-step hiring process.  When companies rush the process or skip steps, they often realize that they didn’t fully know who they were hiring.  And, a bad hire ultimately costs both time and money.

What is Revealed During the Process

If you take the time to think about a typical hiring process, you will that notice different skills and characteristics of a candidate are revealed in each step.       Read More

Using Semi-Formal Interviewing to Uncover More About Candidates

Intentionally create informal moments to see more sides of a potential hire

On my way to our conference room, I passed the sales candidate we were about to interview.  She was seated cross-legged, back straight, her formal heels neatly together on the floor.  Glancing at her portfolio, she tried to look busy as she waited until the 10am interview.

Knowing I was a part of the panel, I did my best to scurry on by so not to “taint” my opinion in any way.  But, then something interesting happened: she SAID something to me.

A casual comment about the upcoming Ohio State game—apparently my OSU pullover revealed me a fan.  We spoke for a few minutes.  As we found things in common, her whole demeanor relaxed.  She was funny, intelligent, and was able to persuade me that Saquon Barkley “could be” the best running back in college ball.       Read More

“Zone-ing” in on Employee Learning and Retention

Imagine overhearing these two sentiments: “OMG.  This job is soooo boring.  I sit here all day long and never learn anything new.”  Or, “I am beyond frustrated.  I have way too much work and no training.  This is just not worth it.”

Employee dissatisfaction (and the desire to look elsewhere) is directly linked to workplace boredom and/ or frustration.  Knowing about the educational principle, Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD), can help employers train effectively, resulting in increased motivation and job satisfaction.       Read More

Is Your Company Strutting its Stuff?

Potential new hires are googling.  How does a company anticipate the results?

The dance of a male peacock is truly fascinating.  Blue iridescent feathers shimmer in a proud exhibit of splendid ornamentation.  Strutting back and forth, its wide arc of feathered beauty captivates.  This is nature’s version of full display.

In today’s information age, just like the majestic peacock, a company is on full display.   A simple internet search can reveal many pros and cons of employment.  How can a company determine if it’s strutting at its best to a potential new hire?       Read More

The Silent Treatment and other Job Rejection Faux Pas

You’ve been selected for an interview. Chosen among many qualified candidates, you feel strong and self-assured. Dressed for success, you present a determined handshake, solid interview answers, and polished resume. You leave the conference room with head held high, giving only a fleeting glance to the row of candidates seated outside.

And then, you wait. You write a thank you note. Turn the ringer up on your phone. Check your email to make sure it’s updating properly. Interview responses churn in your mind until doubt slowly dampens your hope.       Read More

How to Recruit and Hire Confident Employees

We can all recall the day we learned to ride a bike. It seemed an impossible task to our six-year-old selves. You want me to do what, Mom?” On just two skinny wheels, Dad?

It may have taken you months to become “ready.” Stumbling, skinned knees, riding only a few feet at a time. Practice. Practice. Practice.

Until…the day it became easy. Remember that day? Streaming down hills, no hands, wind in your hair…
The day you learned to ride your bike, you conquered something you once thought impossible. And overcoming challenges- whether it be in sports, relationships, or business– builds confidence.       Read More

What is “Employee Brownout”?

It’s tough to retain employees in the workforce today. We’ve all heard the common phrase, “employee burnout”. It’s when employees become disengaged, overwhelmed, and ultimately leave to pursue something new. It comes quickly. It can be predicted based on poor work performance, lack of motivation, and clear disengagement with their job.

But did you know there’s something referred to as “employee brownout”? Dr. Travis Bradberry explained that brownout is when “interest in their jobs slowly dissipates”.  On the surface, an employee may seem perfectly fine: they put in the hours, work hard, and continue to contribute to the team.       Read More

The Key to Getting Results

Key to Getting Results

Einstein said, “Insanity is doing the same thing twice and expecting different results.”

In today’s environment, hiring can be a complex process. Sometimes it can be overly complicated to the point that you may not be sourcing qualified candidates and find that you’re consistently revisiting filling the same positions. That is the definition of insanity!

To rephrase what Einstein said, “every system is designed to get the results you get.” So, is your system productive?       Read More

Hiring in the Digital Age

Generations to come will be digital natives and even hiring practices are becoming more digital. One out of two working-age adults in the United States have registered for websites centering on hiring liked LinkedIn and Career Builder.

Today’s job seeker can see opportunities everywhere. If you have an opening and take too long to respond or make it difficult to apply, they’ll quickly pass it up for another job opening.  This is only the first problem many employers are experiencing with the digitalization of the hiring process.       Read More