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HR Matters // A Newsletter On: Creating exceptional workplaces and extraordinary results

Companies are reaching the tipping point where their inability to fill job openings is causing serious consequences for businesses, potentially resulting in longer working hours and lower quality work as a result of staff shortages. This in turn can reduce morale and lead to higher staff turnover, ultimately raising hiring costs to the business further down the line. In addition, companies are finding themselves having to turn down business because they don’t have the staff to serve and expand their businesses. Is your inability to fill job openings impacting your business?

I can’t make you take my advice. I can only offer recommendations based on my work with clients who are achieving levels of success that you are only dreaming about. If you are serious about filling your job openings, then read on.

Ten More Reasons Why You Can’t Fill Jobs, And What You Can Do To Change This

My last article on Ten Reasons Why You Can't Fill Jobs, And What You Can Do To Change This certainly hit a chord. This piece was one of my most read articles and with good reason. The article was on target, succinct and powerful, and caught the eye of many leaders who asked for more.
Here are ten more reasons you can’t fill jobs, and what you can do to change this.

  1. You don’t know what job you are really trying to fill. Stop recycling old job descriptions that have been out of style for years now and instead take a closer look at the results you’d like this person to achieve. Then work backwards to put together a results description that will end in a great hire the first time around.

  2. You’re taking too long to promote people. The best people for the job are often those who are already in the company. Give your internal people a chance to grow with your organization. Look inside before turning your attention to the outside pool of talent.

  3. You’re hiring based on experience rather than potential. It’s great to have a wish list a mile long, but in a hot applicant market, it’s unlikely you’ll ever make hire if you stick to your unrealistic list. Instead, seek people with potential.

  4. You’re ignoring the underemployed. Admit it. You look at candidates differently, especially those with college degrees, when their resumes indicate they are currently working full-time as a barista or retail associate. This is a common mistake that is being made by many. Embrace this sector of the workforce. They will arrive at your workplace fully prepared to show up every day (and on time) and be most grateful for the opportunity that you have just given them to apply their enthusiasm and knowledge to your business.

  5. You’re playing bait and switch with candidates. Prospective employees are told they will be meeting with a VP or GM and instead, they wind up meeting with someone who has little or no hiring authority. You’ve broken the golden rule of treating others as you would like to be treated. How would you feel if you took a day off from work to meet with a VP only to find upon arrival that you had been delegated down several levels? Be sure your senior level employees understand that hiring is job number one and that this type of behavior is not acceptable.

  6. Applying for a job with your company is a real turn off. If it takes more than ten minutes to complete the online job application or the one you give to all candidates, then it’s taking way too long. Instead, use an abbreviated application that will provide you with what you need to know in order to decide if a candidate is worth going the next step for. You can always have the candidate complete the full application if you mutually agree it makes sense to move forward together.

  7. Your offers are an insult. I’m sure you can purchase plenty of candidates “on sale,” however is this really in your best interest? For example, if I’m paying a premium for service, then I expect five-star service. Underpaid workers are far less likely to deliver high levels of service than those who feel they are adequately compensated. Pay people what you believe they are worth and be sure your first offer is your best offer.

  8. You don’t really want to hire someone. You are going through the motions to show your staff you are supporting them, but you really don’t want to incur the expense of another person on your payroll. You figure if you delay as long as you can, they’ll forget that you are actually attempting to hire someone. Employees are smart. They’ll catch onto this game quickly and will be packing their bags as soon as they realize your true intentions. In the mean time, these same overworked employees will unknowingly be damaging your brand. If you say you are going to hire someone, then do what you say you will do. Anything less than that is a lie.

  9. You’re waiting for perfection to walk in the room. You are waiting for the perfect candidate to walk in the room, yet there is no such thing as a perfect candidate. There are a lot of great candidates out there that can easily do the job that you are asking them to do. Admittedly, some may require a bit of smoothing around the edges or further development to ensure they are able to sufficiently complete every task that is on your list. Forget perfection and instead hire someone who has most of the attributes that you are seeking.

  10. You are overwhelmed and don’t know where to begin. You are not alone. Hiring the right people for your firm requires considerable thought. Of course being paralyzed and doing nothing to advance your cause isn’t very helpful either. Begin by picking up the phone and asking for help. I promise you’ll be glad you did.

© 2015 Matuson Consulting. All Rights Reserved.

Highlights from my interview with Al Gardner, President and CEO of Fiat Chrysler

I had the pleasure of recently speaking with Al Gardner, President and CEO of Fiat Chrysler. His company is making some very bold moves to help their dealerships attract and retain top talent. Why? You cannot sell and service cars without workers. Finding and keeping talent is tops on the list of challenges for their dealerships. Gardner has big plans to continue to grow the Fiat Chrysler brand. However, he knows that in order to do so, he must help his dealers fuel their business with talent. Read my latest blog posting on Forbes to learn more about how Fiat Chrysler is putting the pedal to the metal to win the race for talent.

Companies like Fiat Chrysler have more resources than most of you. However, that shouldn’t stop you from making your own bold moves. Are you ready and able to outmaneuver the competition for talent? If not, what must you do differently to compete for talent and win?

Who is Training Whom?

Our eighteen-month-old Westie, Trevor, knows what he wants. Trevor likes to rise at 1:30 AM and howl at the moon. He doesn’t stop until he is on a moonlit stroll with his master. Thankfully, this is my husband’s dog, which I remind him each time Trevor howls. I’d say he has my husband well-trained.

In many organizations, the staff also has the leadership well-trained. When there is discomfort, someone on the team howls until management takes notice. Are you jumping every time someone makes noise, or are you stepping back and allowing the team to settle down on their own?

Have you forgotten why you are in business?

The other day, my husband went to have our snow tires switched out. As many of you know, we’ve had one heck of a winter here in the Northeast so he didn’t want to take them off too early! He checked in and after providing the clerk with his cell phone number so they could text him when the car was ready, he took a seat in the small waiting room and began watching a movie on his iPad. Every now and again, he would look up and note that those who had come in after him had already departed. He finally checked his phone to realize that he had received a text 45 minutes prior alerting him his car was ready. Why no one thought to come up to him to let him know that his car was ready is a mystery he is still trying to unravel.


Technology is great, but it shouldn’t replace the human element. Remember this the next time you decide to implement a new system in a business that relies on customer satisfaction and repeat business.

Listening to our own advice
We are taking our own advice and will be announcing a bold move next month to better help our clients maximize their talent! Stay tuned for details.

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For more tips on attracting and retaining top talent, download a copy of Talent Magnetism. Call us today at 413-582-1840 if you’d like to discuss applying these concepts to your organization.

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Meet Roberta Matuson

For more than 25 years, Roberta Matuson has helped leaders in Fortune 500 companies, including General Motors, Best Buy, and, The Boston Beer Company, achieve dramatic growth and market leadership through the maximization of talent.

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Email: Roberta@MatusonConsulting.com
Tel: 413.582.1840 | Fax: 413.582.7111

© 2015 Matuson Consulting. All Rights Reserved.