Oh, the single life. You’re in a crowded bar, scanning the masses to identify someone worth talking to. Someone you want to get to know better. It’s all superficial at this point, scanning for features that attract us to someone else and trying to get up the courage to say hello and strike up a conversation.
Maintaining a relationship almost seems easy when you consider how much effort you conjure up just to say one thing. Give yourself a little credit, though. That first line is hard. It’s the first memory, the first story or perhaps just one of many stories to sum up a night. Women actually talk about this a lot in their friend circles, discussing the one-liners and introductions that go horribly wrong or never happen at all. I’ve even heard them compare cities based on how willing a guy is to say the first thing and start a conversation. Apparently New York is better than Boston.
I’m no expert in geography based pickups but what that does highlight is a general trend of fear in conversation. People are actually scared to start conversations with strangers. They’re not sure what, if anything, they have to say that will get people to respond and make the impact they want to make. With little to no information or context, we’re left to our own wit and creativity to attract attention – in a good way, of course.
Room for Error and Glorious Failure
That leaves a lot of room for error and with that opportunity of glorious failure comes fear. We’re putting too much pressure on ourselves in this moment to say something that will have an immediate and significant impact. The problem, as I see it, is that many times we’re just too self-involved. Instead of playing detective to try and figure out what they are most interested in talking about, we’re considering our own involvement and context and trying to say something about us that resonates. Any good pick-up artist (or any person who has watched Hitch recently) know that that’s not quite how it works. If you want someone to be interested in you, you have to show interest in them first.
Of course this quite directly translates into the #1 trouble recruiters and sourcers are constantly talking about – not just how to find people but how to get their interest. How we coach, teach and triumph when it comes to engagement recruiting. The odd part about the conversation in recruiting is how often technology comes up in this conversation. How we try to remove the human on the most human part of this whole thing: relationship building. News flash: robots aren’t good at everything.
So on this week’s RecruitingLive, I’ve invited Jennifer Newbill to share her expertise and actionable insights on starting the conversation in recruiting. She gets it – she’s the Senior Manager of Global Employment Brand at Dell and has served in several recruiting roles for companies large and small. She also drop her knowledge on social media and it’s place in recruiting conversations, employee advocacy, referrals and how to train your team to execute on social recruiting.
See you there!