November 19, 2010   view past issues

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Give the Gift of a Bright Future This Holiday Season

Are you looking to do something special this Holiday season for a college-age son or daughter, an out-of-work spouse or partner or a discouraged friend or neighbor?

Well, now you can. Give them the gift of a bright future; give them a copy of The Career Activist Republic. You’ll find it at, in bookstores nationwide and at

The world of work has been turned upside down. How can a person make sense of all the changes? More importantly, how can they do better than survive, how can they prosper despite the changes (and even because of them)?

The answers to those questions and more are in Peter Weddle’s underground hot seller, The Career Activist Republic. Get it for those you care about. Get it for yourself.

Pay Attention to the Small Stuff

Put almost any two people side-by-side and the physical dissimilarities between them will be obvious. Height, weight, hair or lack of it, posture, facial shape – they all combine to give each of us a distinctive appearance. The Human Genome Project, however, proved that, at our most basic level, we are just three percent different. In other words, very small variations have a huge impact on the way we are perceived. And that’s true, whether we’re individual human beings or employers searching for top talent.

The importance of the big stuff is obvious. We know that our employment brand and our recruitment process, for example, will significantly influence our ability to attract and sell the best prospects. What we may not realize is just how critical the small stuff is. Indeed, if the Human Genome Project is any indication, it’s the seemingly minor details that actually differentiate us in the minds of candidates.

Be that as it may, the apparent insignificance of minor details often causes them to be ignored. We are strapped for time, budget and staff resources, so we devote ourselves to getting the big stuff right. That’s certainly necessary, but also insufficient. The big stuff is only the foundation of our organization’s perceived value as an employer. The superstructure is composed of the nuances in our practices and procedures that set an organization apart. The foundation will support them, but it’s the behaviors themselves that truly make a difference.

The Small Stuff That Makes a Big Difference

There are hundreds, maybe even thousands of subtle and not so subtle details that shape the way things are done by an organization. Some will clearly have a greater impact than others, but all will play a role in how it is perceived by candidates. So, where should you begin if you want to ensure your employer’s image is as positive and appealing as it can be? Here are my five suggestions for small stuff that can have a big impact:

Number 1. Address the single greatest complaint from job seekers by:

  • adding a statement to all job postings that you will acknowledge the receipt of every resume you receive and
  • providing the email address that will keep the message out of spam filters.
  • Number 2. Make courtesy and respect an integral part of your employment brand by:

  • thanking candidates for visiting your employer’s Web-site and
  • positioning that statement as the first thing candidates see when they arrive in the career area.
  • Number 3. Help keep job seekers from wasting their time by:

  • immediately removing outdated job postings from your corporate career area and any job boards you’ve used and
  • indicating whether the positions have been filled, postponed or canceled.
  • Number 4. Treat candidates as individuals not generic prospects by:

  • using the second person – you – to address them in all job postings and career site content and
  • tailoring those messages to the priorities and interests of their occupational field.
  • Number 5. Show candidates that you do not consider them simply one of the herd by:

  • using their name when beginning email messages and other communications and
  • ensuring that you spell their name correctly.
  • Perception is reality in the War for the Talent, and perceptions are most influenced by the tiny differences among employers. Craft those differences to optimize the experience of candidates in your organization, and you’ll dramatically enhance its appeal among the top candidates in the workforce.

    Thanks for reading,


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    A More Honest Form of Employment

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