I need your help. I am going to ask the same thing over on the Talent Seeker (recruiter) side. I have a theory and would like you to validate it or tell me that I should lay off the cold medicine.
My premise is that people who are looking for a job would rather know the facts than be impressed by well-written fiction. That you, the job seeker, would rather not waste your time applying for a job that you know you aren’t going to like. And that you would be especially interested in working for a company that took the risk of being transparent and authentic.
Some of my friends smirk at me, or openly laugh. The say things like “Pet Rock” and “All New and Improved!” meaning, of course, that people tell businesses all the time that they want to be entertained more than informed, that a clever slogan is more important than solid information.
It’s true that marketing says silly things and people buy based on slogans and hyperbole. But I don’t think it is fair to compare buying laundry detergent to selecting a job. Buy the wrong laundry detergent and you have wasted $7. Settle for the wrong job and you are in for months of heartache, mental anguish and negative emotions. So my theory is based on an (hopefully reasonable) assumption that people are more careful about their jobs than their daily purchases. The risk of a bad pet rock is pretty small. The risk of a bad job is huge.
And yet there are a lot of people who make a pretty good living taking “Must be willing to work like a sled dog for horse meat” and turn it into “Exciting Artic job opportunities!” They tell us that it is the recruiter’s responsibility to lure you, and a recruiter's job to make a decision about whether you are right for the job or not. I think they are wrong. I think it is the job seeker's responsibility, but that you can't be held accountable for something that you don’t know.
So take a look at the post we put up last week called “Sexy Language” and the post on this subject on the recruiters side and then let us know:
Which would you rather have? Sexy language or the truth? And, if the truth was presented to you, could you “handle it”? Would you reward a company for being open, or would you tend to shy away? Can you tell us about examples of job descriptions that you think were good? One’s that were bad? What was the difference?
I think this a big deal and an important topic. You start your relationship with most companies by reading a job description. It seems like you would want to know as much as possible about whom you were going to spend so much time with. But maybe it’s just me, and maybe it’s just too much cold medicine…
Fact or fiction? Let me know!