The Value of a First Impression

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Being a Recruiter means that I am the one who makes the ultimate decision when it comes to hiring: Yes or No. So… how do I come to that decision? I take a few things into consideration: I base it off of their answers to the interview questions, the reference checks that I complete in regards to their work ability and, most importantly, I base it off of the first impression that I get.

When I first started this blog I asked a couple of the girls from the office what their idea of a ‘first impression’ is. For me, a first impression is formed the moment that I see their resume pop into my inbox: Does their layout make sense? What format did they use? How was their spelling? From the resume comes the first point of contact: How were their mannerisms on the phone when I called to book the interview? Did I have to call multiple times before getting a response? Were there difficulties in scheduling the interview? From that point comes the face-to-face introduction: Did they show up to the appointment on time? Were they dressed appropriately? Did they come prepared? Did they have the required documentation with them?

When I first started at Plan A, I was told that as a Recruiter you have to go with what your gut tells you: “Go with your gut. If you have any hesitation or feelings of uncertainty, say no“. I’ve learned from constant reminders and experience that the value of a first impression means absolutely everything. It’s the very first thought that crosses your mind and forms the initial opinion or idea of this person who could very well turn out to represent your company in the future. If it’s the first thought that crosses your mind, it will be the first thought that crosses others’ minds as well. Always take that into consideration since (eventually) they will become the face of your organization. Your first thought is going to be the thought that crosses others’ minds and that thought could change the way that the public thinks about your organization. Is that the way you would want others to think of the organization that you work for?

I had a professor in College who once said that we have a sixth sense. In school we learn about the senses of touch, smell, sight, hearing and taste, but he believed that we also had a sense of intuition – we are able to sense if something is right or if it’s wrong – and to never ignore it. Although it may feel as though you are passing judgement on someone you barely know, it is an expectation of the job that you do what it best for your company.

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