August 16, 2012   view past issues

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We Won the Medal Count, But …

… Are We Losing What Counts More?

The U.S. may have won the medal count at the Olympics, but it is in danger of losing what counts more: our faith in the future. Pundits and commentators are now opining that the American Dream has been replaced by the Chinese Dream and the Indian Dream and the Korean Dream.

And, that’s just not true. We are as strong or stronger in the global economic race as we were in the Olympics. If you’d like to know why, read my new book. It’s called A Multitude of Hope: A Novel About Rediscovering the American Dream. Sure, it’s fiction, but it’s fiction that is 100 percent true.

To read a free excerpt, click here.

Or, order your copy from right now. Just click here.

Use the Socratic Method in Candidate Email

We do it all the time. We find a great prospect for a key opening and send off an email message to start our recruiting conversation. More often than not, however, all that comes back is the sound of silence. The conversation never begins because we haven’t structured the message to stimulate a reply. We haven’t used the Socratic method.

Email may seem old fashioned in these days of social media, but the research shows it’s still the preferred method of online communication. In a survey of 1,100 association members – people who are committed to improving themselves in their profession or what we colloquially call “A” and “B” level performers – the majority reported that they prefer to be contacted by email.

Among all of the survey’s respondents, 89 percent said they favored email, while just 8 percent favored social media. And in the cohort of respondents thought to be most committed to social media – those 24 to 34 years of age – the numbers were almost the same. An astonishing 87 percent said they favored email, while 13 percent gave the nod to social media.

Given this preference for email contacts, it’s critical that we understand how best to structure such messages to ensure they are successful. What’s the definition of success? It has two components:

  • First, we must get the prospect to refrain from hitting the Delete button and reply to our message.
  • and

  • Second, we must pique their interest enough to turn that reply into the first iteration of a conversation.
  • Getting Prospects to Answer the Mail

    The most effective recruiting email messages have three components:

    A Personal Greeting. The email must begin with a salutation that addresses the recipient by name. The best talent abhor being treating as if they are a generic candidate, so such greetings as “Hi There” or “Dear Colleague” are an immediate ticket to the dump. Instead, do your homework, learn the person’s first name and begin your message with that. Simple as it sounds, using “Hi Jim” or Hello Jane” helps to establish you as a peer rather than yet another vendor trying to sell them something.

    A Value Statement. The best talent are never interested in a job, but most area always on the lookout for a career advancement opportunity. So, don’t use a bureaucratic job title or position description to introduce your opening. And, don’t use words – such as Requirements and Responsibilities – that only an employer could love. Instead, focus on describing “what’s in it for them.” Tell them what they will get to do, what they can learn, what they will be able to accomplish, whom they will work with and how they will be recognized and rewarded.

    A Socratic Trigger. Our culture teaches people that it’s impolite to ignore a question. So, stimulate a reply by ending your message with one. It won’t work with every prospect, of course, but it will induce many to reply to your first message and then to every message after that. In your first message, keep your value statement short and sign off by asking if they would like to know more. Then, in subsequent messages, add more detail and ask them if such an opportunity would be right for them at this point in their career or, if they feel as if their current job lacks such challenge and rewards. And, then, keep asking until they hear what they need in order to apply.

    This iterative messaging based on questions from you and answers from the prospect is a version of the Socratic method. It educates the message recipient by getting them tell you what they want (or need) to know. As a result, it transforms the interaction from a sales pitch into a quasi-counseling or coaching experience that will help them see your opening as an opportunity they can’t pass up.

    Thanks for Reading,


    Visit me at

    Sourcing Career Success

    As recruiters and HR professionals, we spend 33 percent of our day (or more) on-the-job and 100 percent of our job helping others to achieve career success.

    Don’t our own careers deserve equal attention? Absolutely! And the one best way to do that is by sourcing career success with WEDDLE’s books. They include:

    The Career Fitness Workbook. This book introduces a complete regimen of activities that will help you successfully compete for and hang onto the job of your dreams. Think of it as “career insurance.” It’s a one-of-a-kind program that not only tells you what to do, but how to do it and how often. At just $14.95, it’s the smartest investment you’ll ever make.

    Recognizing Richard Rabbit. This fable for adults will entertain and delight you and help you out of the boxes that keep you from becoming the champion inside you. It is a novel and engaging way to recognize the talented person you are meant to be.

    The Career Activist Republic. This blockbuster of a book provides a provocative yet positive assessment of the changing world of work in the American economy and describes an innovative strategy that will enable you to avoid the pitfalls and capture the opportunities in this new environment.

    The Success Matrix: Wisdom from the Web on How to Get Hired and Not Be Fired. This anthology collects the best of Peter Weddle’s columns on job search and career success. It is the only book you’ll find that provides a candid and totally up-to-date look at how to get and stay ahead in today’s workplace.

    Be At Your Best With the Best Tools

    The best recruiters use the best resources to get the job done. And, when it comes to reaching top talent online, their choice is clear. It’s WEDDLE’s Guides for Recruiting Success. Get yours today!

    WEDDLE’s 2011/12 Guide to Employment Sites on the Internet. This is the 10th edition of the Guide the American Staffing Association called the “Zagat” of job boards and social media sites.

    WEDDLE’s Guide to Association Web Sites. This book details the recruiting resources and capabilities that are available at the Web-sites of over 3,000 professional and technical associations.

    Finding Needles in a Haystack. This one-of-a-kind guide lists over 25,000 keywords and keyword phrases, across 5,400 job and position titles in 28 industries and professions.

    Remember What Your Mother Taught You

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    Don’t keep WEDDLE’s Newsletter to yourself. Please tell your colleagues and friends about it and encourage them to sign up.

    They should click here to reach our registration page. Then, using the dropdown window they can select any or all of the following free newsletters:

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  • So, please spread the word. And many thanks, for your support!