John Borrowman, CPC
Borrowman Baker, LLC
You wouldn’t buy a product or service without verifying the claims you hear about it. Why would you not take a similar approach during a job search?
We’re not suggesting that a potential employer isn’t painting an accurate picture of the opportunity. It’s important, however, to take a look at that picture from more than one angle. You probably already know you need to do this. But, how? What can you ask that will give you the real story without coming off like a police investigator?
Sometimes, what you hear can be validated by asking for examples.
Employer: There’s no limit on you here. You can rise as fast as you want.
You: That sounds great! Is there someone I can meet and talk to who started in the job I’m interviewing for who has risen quickly through the ranks?
The employer who makes claims for your future in the practice should be able to introduce at least one example. Your conversation with that person should focus on understanding the actions and initiatives that resulted in advancement. There isn’t always an example. But, when there isn’t it could be a situation where the boss is remembering how it was for him and glossing over the reality of how it is today.
Sometimes, you have to validate what you hear by talking to the people in the trenches; i.e., your would-be co-workers. Lay the groundwork for this in your first interview by expressing an interest in talking to peers at an appropriate point in the process.
This is when you can ask whether the work week really is fifty to fifty-five hours, or whether it’s more like sixty or maybe seventy hours. This is when you can learn how flexible the boss is when you need to leave to handle something with your kids, for example. This is when you can figure out how various policies play out in actual practice.
The key is to ask questions, but ask them of people who are in a position to know how things really work on a day-to-day basis in the practice.
If you’d like coaching on how to develop those questions, contact us for a confidential conversation.