When faced with a closed door, do you test it to see what’s behind it or do you accept that it is closed to you and wait for it to open? Unfortunately, that’s how most organizations are viewing their ability to attract top talent. They are standing in front of a metaphorical door, waiting for it to open.
I’m attending a conference this week, and, if you are a woman, that often involves standing in long restroom lines. So, imagine there are three closed doors in the restroom. Many of you might assume a closed door means occupied. Perhaps the bravest among us will look under the door for feet. But, what if the door is full size and that option is unavailable? What would you do?
Waiting in this line, I watched the first two stalls regularly open and close. However, in the time I waited, I never saw the third door open. I asked the women next to me if anyone had knocked on the door. She didn’t know, so I cut out of line and tested the door. The stall had been empty all along resulting in longer waits for the people in line.
Why is this an important story to share?
Because we often make the closed-door assumption when we are recruiting for our organizations. We assume candidates are not available to us because they don’t apply to job ads. We assume candidates are not available because they don’t return our phone calls. We assume, assume, assume until we find ourselves standing around patiently waiting for a door that will never open.
We fail to test that assumption. Being brave enough to step out and knock on a door to see if someone answers is a great first step to breaking free from assumptions that hold you back from attracting the top talent your organization needs.
So, if you are patiently waiting for the door to open and reveal your ideal candidate, stop right now. Remember in today’s economy, the people you want to hire are working somewhere else. You have to open the door and invite them it.
Go test that closed door. Open it yourself. You might be surprised to find candidates behind that door waiting for you to come to them.
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Or, if you prefer to use a do it yourself approach, I’ve got you covered. The YOLO Principle is a good way to begin knocking on closed doors. Grab your copy of The YOLO Principle: The Ultimate Hiring Guide for Small Business. It’s packed with tools, templates, and step-by-step instructions. Purchase your copy here or on Amazon.