Why You Were Hired: A Note from the Executive Recruiter

Why You Were Hired: A Note from the Executive Recruiter

Note: This post was inspired by two posts recently published by Dave Ashton of SnapCar. It, like Dave’s “Why I hired you” and “Why I fired you”, is a fictitious note to a fictitious employee. I love Dave’s notes. They should be required reading for anyone looking for a job, or who is in a job and facing  difficulties. Caveat: My firm provides executive search, career transition services and executive coaching. Dise & Company does not have an existing business relationship with Dave or his firm.

Dear New Hire:

Congratulations on your new job. You earned it!

Do you have any idea how you got to where you are now?

You went through the wringer to get this job. I know because my firm was engaged to find you. It’s what we do. I was involved from start to finish.

Your employer had a mission-critical position to fill. That position is now yours.

After struggling and failing, your new boss decided she had to get it right. She engaged an executive search firm, a head hunter. I’m thankful she engaged us to find you because we love helping companies find great people.

In case you have doubts about your qualifications for this job, or if you ever have any doubts in the future, I have written this letter to inform you of the journey we took to find you.

Out of the many… one: “How you came to be chosen”


Here are the steps we took to get you where you are now.

1. We studied your new employer.

We needed to thoroughly understand what your company needed. We visited their offices and met with many stakeholders. We learned about their management structure, leadership style and corporate culture. We got input from everyone about what was absolutely necessary for your job to be performed successfully.

We learned about the unspoken, but very real, values, expectations, and policies that influence the behavior of your new employer’s leaders and employees. We needed to know as much as possible about the people who would become your new colleagues.

2. We defined the characteristics of the perfect candidate.

We embarked on a search for the “perfect” candidate.

What’s your role and what are your responsibilities? What are the expectations? Are there any departmental issues that need to be resolved? We’re looking for someone with a “can-do” attitude, a collaborative management style. A person who’s both strategic and tactical… who can understand the job and get it done.

3. We developed a scorecard with mission, outcomes, and competencies.

The scorecard we created included mission critical outcomes impacting profit and loss. Your job is to grow revenue and increase EBITDA. You’ll also top grade the area of your immediate supervision and help to top grade your employer’s organization as a whole.

You’re an “A” player. You’ll choose other “A” players to help you manage the business. You’ll be responsible for developing financial forecasts. You’ll design and roll out sales training to customer-facing employees.

4. We wrote a compelling job specification to capture your imagination. It described your potential new employer, the wonderful opportunity being offered and exciting performance expectations.

The job specification was the first thing you read. We described what your potential new employer was looking for, told you about the company’s culture, and what they’re planning to offer you.

5. We planned and executed an aggressive strategy for finding great candidates.

The recruiter who first called you had done a lot of old fashioned detective work to find you. She was tenacious. She was inquisitive and friendly. You enjoyed talking with her about your career history and your personal career goals. Even though she asked you tough questions, you learned a lot about yourself from them. You hoped she would get back to you. You were thrilled when she did.

To find you, we did on-line research, posted on job boards and directly contacted 150 influencers, sources, and candidates. This is where the best candidates, including you, started rising to the top.

The best candidates are often what are called “passive candidates.” They’re the ones not actively looking for jobs because they’re hard at work, totally focused on their current jobs. Thank you for the time you took to speak with our recruiter when she called.

6. We reviewed all the candidates and looked beyond the resume.

We screened a lot of resumes. Sometimes we have as many as 200 candidates to work through. In some difficult searches there have been only 5 or 6 possible candidates in the entire country who can do the job. In your case we had only twenty that fit the bill. We identified 6 who fit all our client’s requirements. We presented our slate of best candidates, which included you. We described each candidate beyond the resume, based on our research, our interviews and other factors that came to our attention.

Your future employer then selected candidates for in-depth interviews.

7. We facilitated all the on-site interviews.

We coordinated all the on-site interviews. After the interviews, we sought feedback from both candidates and interviewers. We summarized all the information we’d gathered for them to use in the final selection process.

8. We provided your employer the information they needed to select you.

We gave your potential employer all the information we’d gathered, and let them decide. Hiring you was not our decision. It was their decision to hire you.

9. On behalf of your employer, we presented the offer to you.

On your future employer’s behalf, we presented their employment offer to you. We did this to eliminate confusion and manage any questions about your compensation, your benefits and your start date. Remember how we prepared you for a counter offer? You assured us you were ready to join our client no matter what your previous employer offered.

You are the best of the best

We did all these things and you rose to the top. You were hired because you were the best of the best. You now have an opportunity to make a real difference in a meaningful job.

To make a big impact in the world.

To make a big impact in your world.

What do you think? Do you like Dave’s posts, too? What would you do if you had the same opportunity as this candidate?

Please let us know your thoughts by commenting below!

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