Planning for modified hiring processes, handshakes, and video conferences
Businesses and people across the country are preparing for a
potential pandemic of COVID-19, the Novel Coronavirus. But today, like any other day, millions of
people woke up, got themselves ready, and made the commute to work. For the
vast majority of employees who don’t work 100% remotely, physically coming into
work is a reality, pandemic or not.
Employers are making business continuity plans, and major
companies like Twitter
are banning all non-essential travel.
Google and Facebook both canceled their developer
conferences in the wake of the outbreak. Some have even restricted their
own employees from offices until they complete a mandatory quarantine after
traveling to high-risk areas for business or pleasure.
But businesses must continue to operate. And part of
operating means hiring new employees as business needs arise. The use of phone interviews or video calls is
widespread for early stages of the hiring process, but most companies require
an in-person meeting at least once before extending an offer.
If you are working with a staffing agency like Talener, your
representative is your advocate – especially if you have concerns or questions
regarding on-site interviews. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and get answers
prior to going on-site. If companies have enacted work-from-home policies, ask
how it affects your ability to interview as well as your potential start with
If you are working on your own, most hiring managers or HR
will appreciate the heads up about any concerns you may have.
If you have traveled to a high-risk area recently, please be
courteous to your interviewers and give them a heads up to confirm if they
would like to re-schedule, conduct a video conference, or have you come into
Likewise, if you know that the company at which you are
applying has international offices in high-risk areas and employees who travel
frequently, you should ask the hiring manager or your staffing representative
if they are taking any precautions with their own staff.
Experiencing sever cold or flu-like symptoms before your
interview? It is in your best interest
and the interviewers to give them as much notice as possible if you are feeling
under the weather. While canceling an
interview is never ideal, providing as much notice as you can is always the
This is particularly true if you have traveled to risk-areas
or if you live in a densely populated area where you are in constant contact
with people at shops, restaurants, or on public transportation.
It is OK to let your interviewer know that you are trying to
follow universal precautions during the outbreak. If you’ve been on public
transportation, take this approach, “I was just on the subway, could you point
me to the restroom to wash my hands before we get started?”
If you are uncomfortable skipping the handshake, keep hand
sanitizer with you or ask to use the restroom to wash your hands before you
begin your interview.
Many companies have business continuity and disaster plans
in place, particularly in densely populated areas or if they have employees
that travel regularly. During the
interview, ask about work-from-home policies, policies on personal and
work-sponsored travel, and expectations.
During this time, your Talener representatives are in
constant contact with clients. They are learning about continuity plans as they
emerge as well as making alternative arrangements if in-person interviews are
not a viable option. If you have questions about a company with whom you are
interviewing, use Talener as a resource.
For more information about the Novel Coronvirus (COVID-19),
the WHO, CDC, and National Institute of
Health provide universal precautionary measures as well as information
about the spread of the virus.
Setting goals and expectations for yourself at a new job can help set you up for success from day one. Josh Nigro, Talener New York’s newest team member, sat down with us to talk about how he visualizes his goals and how he intends to be successful in a Relationship Manager seat.
into your new role at Talener, what are some goals you’ve set for yourself?
want to hit the ground running in order to help as many candidates as I can. It’s
important to me to sharpen my tech knowledge so I can fully contribute to
conversations with candidates about their experience and future career goals. I am committed to building my career in a
Relationship Manager seat in order to move into a Senior Relationship Manager
role and then run my own team as a Group Manager.
skills are you looking to sharpen, learn, and expand upon?
looking to sharpen my entry points on phone calls and emails. By doing this, I
can build relationships and trust with my candidates – helping to set them up
for success in the best possible job for them.
It’s important for me to learn how to screen candidates for their ideal
job and approach interviews prepared with the right questions. Learning these
skills sets me up for expanding upon finding my own clients and focusing on
will be challenging for you?
think that learning how to deal with uncomfortable situations will be a big
challenge for me. Nobody likes to be uncomfortable, but I think that diving
into these difficult situations prepares me for the good and the bad. It’s hard to tell someone that an interview
didn’t go well or that they didn’t’ get the job; but being upfront means I am
being honest about their career – something that is a vital part of their life. Additionally, these situations prepare me to
have similar conversations down the line – both personally and professionally.
are you looking forward to in your new role?
really looking forward to connecting with the candidates. I want them to land
the role that they’ve been looking for and I want to build a relationship with
them at the same time. I strive to be their source of knowledge as well as a
source for their friends and co-workers who are looking to make a change in
their careers. I am looking forward to
drew you to Talener?
interview process was direct and detailed. I knew the expectations coming into
the job. The environment and the people
were open with me – explaining how I can create success for myself, the team,
and the company. Everyone took time to
learn about me and show me how I can apply my knowledge to the position. I also appreciated the openness in the
workspace. Everyone sits in an open work environment where we can collaborate
as a team.
us about yourself
childhood, my passion has been baseball. Competing at a high level was a great
way for me to learn leadership skills, work with a team, and appreciate the
sacrifice for the betterment of the team.
always wanted to be a successful baseball player, but my dream shifted as I got
older and I set my sights on wanting to be a General Manager for a club.
Fire Favorites: Book, Song & Movie
of the Flies – it’s a roller coaster of emotions. Children are creating an
entire society, testing their moral values.
It’s a good theme to discuss and even apply in the workplace.
Love, by the Outfield
The Talener NY Team is looking forward to the enthusiasm that Josh brings to the team. His experience and his desire to set and meet goals is infectious! We can’t wait to see the great things that Josh will do for the Open Source community in New York.
Looking back at the past few years, I can see that I’ve
grown a lot personally and professionally. My time at Talener has been an
experience that has allowed me to become more confident, make decisions, create
my own path, and build relationships with peers, candidates, and some of the
world’s leading companies.
My promotion to Group Manager lets me reflect on the skills
I’ve learned, the confidence I’ve built, and how I want to drive my team into
the future of Talener Boston.
Committing to building long-term relationships has helped me
on both the candidate side and the client side of the staffing business. These
relationships are critical for me to differentiate myself from other recruiters
in the Boston Metro. Strong
relationships build solid foundations, and this is something that I have
continued to learn about during my time at Talener.
Every interaction in creating business relationships is
important. It’s rewarding in so many ways to build strong enough relationships
that foster referrals from past candidates and clients. This is a huge mark of success for me
personally. It affirms that I’ve put in the time and effort to build enough trust
with someone that they are happy to refer me to their colleagues & friends.
The idea of staffing is straightforward – matchmaking
companies to candidates. But the reality
of staffing is that it is a human business where there are complex situations
and emotions that must be navigated daily.
I’ve taken the opportunity to learn how to be creative in my problem
solving and breakdown situations to analyze about how every step affects the
I’ve become more confident in how I make decisions. I know I
can remain calm in high-pressure situations both inside and outside of the
office. Tackling these situations early on in my career at Talener has been
critical to my success.
my new position as Group Manager, I’m looking forward to developing my team’s
individual skillsets as much as possible.
It’s important, and I look forward to promoting members of the
team. I want to manage in a way that
leverages everyone’s strengths to provide the best service; efficiently
delivering results for clients and candidates.
Personally, I am looking forward to building upon my problem
solving and decision-making skills. Being in a managerial position allows me to
take ownership and accountability of a variety of situations which will only
help me grow professionally and develop these skills further.
I have been working towards a management position since my first day at Talener. Experiencing organic career growth first-hand has been extremely rewarding and I couldn’t be more excited to take on more responsibilities.
The Talener New York team recently promoted William Ware to Lead Relationship Manager. William has worked hard to build his personal brand at Talener, and his promotion is a reflection of his hard work, strong character, and desire to grow.
We sat down with William to get his take on his development
and what he’s learned about himself over the past few years.
Looking back on your first day here, how do you think
that you have grown personally and professionally?
Professionally, I have grown immensely – both in staffing
and as a businessperson in general. It
is an amazing opportunity to work with clients; learning how to provide the
best service possible to them. I’ve
truly learned to take myself seriously as their business partner.
Personally, my confidence has grown, and I know that I can
talk to anyone about anything. It makes
it so much easier to keep conversations flowing.
What keeps you going when you’re having a rough week
I tell myself that there are ups and downs that come
naturally in a ‘people’ industry. I remind myself to try and stay on course. There
are also so many ways to contribute to my team positively; so, in a down month,
it’s important to see how else I can be useful to the overall success of my
is one thing that you have learned along your career path thus far that you
wish that you had learned at university or from someone in the professional
world before you started working?
I wish I had learned to handle ups and downs and to not to
be emotional or frantic when something doesn’t go right or when I didn’t get
the result I wanted. I think I’ve learned that if my process, habits and hard
work are constant, the end results will come as well. This took me a long time
to properly learn.
are your keys to success?
I think that there are several keys to success – all working
in parallel. I understand where I need to allocate my time in order to have the
most impact on a day. I have also
learned to truly care about my interactions and the impact that I have on my
clients, candidates, and colleagues.
This drives me to deliver for each of these people. Likewise, I’ve had
great teammates and mentors during my time at Talener, and they have helped me
to find my success.
have your communication skills developed?
I am much more direct now. I believe that people are always
looking for clarity above anything else.
I’ve found that I’m much more personable with candidates than I was at
the beginning. I make an effort to get
to know the person and strive to have longer and friendlier phone calls.
do you deal with potentially uncomfortable situations?
I think the best way to deal with an uncomfortable situation
is to dive in head-first. This is an industry in which you are impacting
people’s lives in a very significant way. There are often difficult or awkward
situations that arise. They cease to be uncomfortable the more that I encounter
Tell me about a time that you dealt with an unexpected
Recently, a candidate verbally accepted an offer and we got
the go-ahead to send them an offer letter. However, between the time of verbal
acceptance and written acceptance, he received a call from his dream company
asking him to interview. We worked with
him so that he could interview for the new position, while continuing to manage
and maintain our current client’s expectations.
Our ability to remain calm about the situation and give
things a chance to work out (when it looked like they wouldn’t), gave us an
advantage. We already had a great
relationship with the candidate, and we showed transparency on both sides. In the end, our candidate accepted our offer
over his dream company.
do you see yourself in your new role as a Lead Relationship Manager?
I’m excited to be a Lead Relationship Manager moving into
2020. It’s going to be a great year of growth for our team and I’m excited to
be a part of that. I look forward to training and working with more new hires
as well as growing our client list. I’ve been able to build great relationships
with those on my team as well as with clients and candidates. I hope to
continue doing that this year.
Building relationships are a cornerstone to creating long-lasting business partnerships. Talener New York’s Malik Gill has learned that firsthand as he has brought his life experiences and Sociology background into Talener’s staffing business. Malik was recently promoted to a Senior Relationship Manager at Talener and he credits his success, in part, to learning how to cultivate better personal and professional relationships. We sat down with him to get more insight about his time at Talener and what he had to do to get to where he is today.
on your promotion! What does it mean for you?
The promotion solidifies my growth over the past year. It means that I have been able to understand my weaknesses and shortcomings in order to refocus my energy and development on turning those flaws into strengths. In reality, growth and learning never stop. The promotion is just a point in time that recognizes my efforts and success thus far.
have you learned during your time at Talener that has impacted you the most?
learned the true importance of the long game. Every phone call, email,
handshake and referral are vital to long-term success. No connection, no matter
how brief, should ever be taken for granted. All the work that I do now comes into
fruition at some point down the line. Every client becomes a candidate and
every candidate becomes a client. Individual conversations affect your brand
both personally and professionally. Plus, they impact your reputation.
new skills are you developing?
and direct communication. Everyone is on the same page when I know how to
explain complex ideas in a clear and concise manner. Additionally, learning to
be honest and transparent during tough conversations is vital.
is some element of personality management in this position. I need to be able to understand why different
people behave the way they do in the search for employment or in search of new
employees. I look forward to growing this skill as I continue my career.
does your professional and personal growth look like?
and professional growth go hand-in-hand. Over the last year, I have become a
better listener. Instead of listening to respond or defend, I’m learning to listen
with the intent to understand what is being said.
has allowed me to learn more about myself, my candidates, and my clients. The
skill of listening is vital to developing relationships and building my career.
a conversation with our CEO Mike Dsupin, you mentioned some things you considered
to be your “keys to success.” Can you elaborate?
think that I can attribute my success during my time here to building good
relationships. I am building different
types of strong business relationships with my client, their hiring team, and
my candidates. If a candidate is comfortable enough to be honest and
transparent with me about their goals, it significantly increases the chance of
me being able to successfully place them in a job.
key to success has been recognizing when I’m not being successful. There was a
period where I just felt off when dealing with candidates and clients. I
wasn’t really taking the time that I needed with them and I was missing
critical details about their searches and their lives.
I was hindering my own success; I wasn’t meeting my own goals or the ultimate goal: finding a job for my candidate. Once I understood this, I was able to consciously slow down and take the time I needed. I chose to dig deeper on phone calls and in-person to develop a trusting relationship. I’ve now seen the results firsthand and my ability to place candidates has increased. Sometimes the key to success is learning why you haven’t been successful.