Myth busted: Your perfect candidate doesn’t exist (3 tips to hire the RIGHT candidate)

The perfect candidate exists …

Only in your dreams.

In reality, there is no such thing as a perfect candidate for your open position. It’s easy to fall into the trap of believing he or she exists.

Trust us – The Field of Talent team has centuries of recruiting experience. We know how it feels.

You have a specific set of qualifications and experience you’re looking for. Sure. But if that perfect human checked all your boxes on paper, they’ll have weaknesses in-person you can’t ever forget.

Like chewing with their mouth open. Uckkk.

But David, why does the perfect candidate not exist?

Every human has their own unique strengths and weaknesses.

As much as you want your employees to be perfect, they’re not. And they’re not pretending to be.

That feeling when you thought you got the perfect candidate – but they're not perfect

Instead of trying to control your candidates (or using the dark arts to steer them into applying), focus on building a culture and brand that does this for you. The more you intentionally design your culture, the more candidates you’ll attract who fit your unique work environment.

See? Not so hard.

Also, the job market is constantly changing. Who may have been considered a “perfect” fit for a job five years ago may not have the necessary skills today.

For example, you’re looking for a social media manager. This role looked completely different five years ago than it does now.

  • Twitter is … Twitter
  • TikTok reigns supreme
  • Short form video has won

If you would’ve predicted these changes five years ago, people would’ve called you crazy.

The point is – Skills, technologies and tools are always shifting in and out of style. Whoever looks perfect now won’t be perfect tomorrow.

Give up on finding the perfect candidate.

3 tips for finding the right candidate for your open position

This is the conversation you should be having. Finding the right candidate, not the perfect one. Yes!

This means the right skills, personality and experience for the job – rather than someone who fits an idealized notion of “perfection” (whatever that means).

So, what can you do to find the right man or woman for your open job? Here are a few tips:

3 tips to hire the right candidate, not the perfect one
  • Be open-minded — Don’t get too caught up in a specific set of qualifications that may disqualify a great new hire. Consider candidates who don’t fit the persona of your perfect candidate.
  • Be aware of potential biases — Recruitment decisions can be influenced by anything. We’ve seen it all, including a candidate’s appearance, history and even their name. Hiring bias isn’t just unfortunate – It’s illegal. Reduce bias as much as humanly possible to make sure your hiring process is fair for everyone.
  • Consider both active and passive candidates — Your job ad only has so much reach. The most talented and qualified individuals who fit your role may not even know it exists. In fact, they may not even be looking for a new job. Find potential hires by networking, cold reach-outs, events and social media to guarantee your message is heard loud and clear.

As recruiters and people leaders, let’s commit to leaving the idea of a “perfect candidate” in the past.

Need help upgrading your talent acquisition strategy? Field of Talent helps organizations like USA Gymnastics and Audiochuck …

  • Speed up their hiring process
  • Screen and qualify more candidates
  • Hire the best and brightest talent for the job

Schedule your free consult here.

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Myth busted: Your perfect candidate doesn’t exist (3 tips to hire the RIGHT candidate)