Every time I ask for recommendations about different people I would like to work with I get platitudes like “he is OK”. So I thought about telling you a story with a moral.
I have a good friend – he’s Scottish but nationality bears no relevance in this context. He has a large company – over 1000 employees – that he personally runs. Family business. At one point, he discovered that the sales manager was stealing from the company. Ouch… He was stealing with style, through parallel contracts with clients – a famous swindle method, which goes to show that things like these happen in other parts of the world as well and not just in Romania. So our man started gathering information, making waves, talking to clients and asking them why they accepted… anyway – waves. And he sacked the thief. A year went by and the thief (let’s call him this as we don’t know his name anyway) found a job somewhere else. At which point, of course, my friend got a call from the new employer. The standard reference phone call. As some time had passed and frustrations faded, our man thought “maybe it was a mistake; the thief mended his ways; why ruin his career and opportunities?”… Well, you know that way of thinking. And he gave neutral references.
I guess you know what happened next, like in a movie with a predictable ending: the thief stole again. The new employer investigated and found out that he had stolen at his previous two jobs as well. He found out that our friend knew the thief was a thief. And he sued (you’ve guessed) our friend. He won the lawsuit.
The moral: recommendations are an extremely important element – not only in the hiring process but also with regard to the quality of work in general. If we all know that what we are doing now (both good and bad) will impact us in the future, perhaps we’ll make corners perfect at 90 degrees, windows in such a way as to close, programs with less bugs (sorry, an older programmer frustration ). Perhaps the assistant in the shop around the corner will smile when we enter the shop; perhaps the guy sticking discounts notes will place them on the right pair of pants; perhaps excel tables will close from both directions and perhaps people will stop stealing. When you have something to say – both good and bad – say it! You’ll help the one who wants to hire and the one who wants to be hired (as strange as it might seem).
Disclaimer: Luckily, my experiences are good. Exceptions (because I’ve had these too) were few and not worth mentioning.
(English version by Teodora Popescu)
De cate ori cer recomandari despre diversi oameni cu care as vrea sa lucrez, primesc banalitati de genul “este un om OK”. M-am gandit sa va spun o poveste cu morala.
Am un prieten bun – scotian omul, fara nici o relevanta nationalitatea in acest context. Are o firma mare – 1000+ oameni, pe care o conduce personal. Afacere de familie. La un moment dat, descopera ca directorul de vanzari fura. Auch…. Fura finut, prin contracte paralele cu clientii, vestita capusarie, dovada ca nu numai in Romania se intampla. Omul incepe sa se intereseze, face valuri, discuta cu clientii, ii intreaba si pe ei ca de ce au acceptat… ma rog – valuri. Si il da afara pe hot. Trece un an si hotul (sa-l numim asa, ca tot nu-i stim numele) gaseste sa se angajeze in alta parte. Moment in care – bine’nteles – amicul nostru primeste telefon de la noul angajator. Telefonul standard de referinte. Cum trecuse ceva timp si frustrarile se mai topisera, omul se gandeste “poate a fost o greseala, hotul s-a indreptat, de ce sa-i stric cariera si oportunitatile?”… Ma rog, stiti exact modelul de gandire. Si da referinte neutre.
Presupun ca v-ati prins ce s-a intamplat mai departe, ca intr-un film cu sfarsit previzibil: hotul fura din nou. Noul angajator cerceteaza si afla ca si la cele doua joburi dinainte a furat. Afla ca amicul nostru stia ca hotul fura. Si il da in judecata (ati ghicit) pe amic. Castiga.
Morala: referintele sunt un element extrem de important – nu numai in procesul de angajare, ci si in calitatea muncii in general. Daca stim cu totii ca ceea ce facem astazi (atat in bine cat si in rau) se va rasfrange asupra noastra in viitor, poate vom face colturile sa aibe 90 de grade, geamurile sa se inchida, programele cu mai putine buguri (scuzati, frustrari de fost programator ). Poate vanzatorul de la colt ne zambeste cand intram in magazin, poate cel care lipeste promotiile nu pune biletul de discount pe alti pantaloni decat cei pe care trebuia sa puna. Poate ca tabelele excel se vor inchide pe ambele directii si poate lumea nu va mai fura. Cand aveti ceva de spus – si de bine, si de rau – spuneti! Veti ajuta astfel si pe cel care angajeaza si pe cel care se vrea angajat (oricat de ciudat pare).
Disclaimer: Din fericire, experientele mele sunt bune. Exceptiile (caci sunt si de astea) au fost putine si nu merita pomenite.