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How to get the best advice from working references

When you’re interviewing for a new job, choosing the right people as references is an important part of the process, but it’s equally important to make sure they’re ready to market you as the best candidate. First, when asking someone to be a reference, ask if they can be an enthusiastic reference. If you hear any hesitation, please do not list the person. Second, have your letters of recommendation ready to focus on the right areas to help you get the job. They should know what information you want them to convey to the hiring manager, including any information you couldn’t or forgot to mention during the interview. Finally, do your best to manage “backdoor” citations: people you work with but aren’t on your citation list.

When you are shortlisted for a position, companies usually call your references. But you may not be the only shortlisted, reference survey can determine whether you get the job. When hiring managers call recommenders, they want to learn more about your strengths, areas of development, work style, and whether you are a good fit for the company culture and team you are trying to join. The following three steps ensure you’ve picked the right recommenders and they’re ready to discuss why you’re the perfect person for the job.

Step 1: Choose the right referrer

Have you chosen a former manager who can describe your job in detail; colleagues from other departments, They can talk about your ability to work in a global matrix organization; or external clients who can demonstrate your ability to influence without authority, the most important thing to consider when choosing who to refer to is who can be most passionate about to you as a candidate. Enthusiasm is as important as what they say about you (if not more). Hesitating will lower your chances of closing a job. When you ask someone to be a reference, ask if they can be an enthusiastic reference. If you hear any hesitation, please do not list the person. When I’m hiring for a position and I have two great candidates, I call two references for each. One candidate’s recommendation letter was clearly more enthusiastic and motivated me to hire that person.

Step 2: Prepare Your Letter of Recommendation

This is your opportunity to prepare references to focus on the right areas to help you get a job. At the very least, you should make sure your recommenders know two things. First, provide them with the title and description. Second, they should know what message you want them to convey to the hiring manager. Is there anything you couldn’t or forgot to mention in the interview to help them know, such as you’re comfortable working in an ambiguous environment, you’re an adaptive learner, or you’re good at going deep before offering solutions Understand the problem? Be sure to provide examples of any information you would like your reference to include in their conversation. If you’re not sure what to include, consider the following questions:

  1. What skills are critical to this role , and which of your specific skills transfer directly to the position you are applying for?
  2. What qualities make you an ideal candidate for this role? Your ability to coordinate stakeholders or think and execute strategically? Are you keeping your cool under tight deadlines?
  3. What unique qualities make you stand out from other possible candidates? Do you bring from your particular background a unique perspective that is beneficial to the company that no one else has?

  4. Are there areas of improvement that your reference should be able to address? Make sure they have the means to answer questions about your weaknesses or areas of development that you are struggling to overcome. For example, if you are having difficulty delivering your project as your company grows, please provide an example of how you have overcome that area of ​​development and can now adapt quickly to change.

Finally, if you are fired for performance, provide the recruiter or hiring manager with “another point of view” to explain Your departure, make sure your recommenders know this. Hiring managers and recruiters are looking for one thing to stop them. Don’t let your referees fail to answer questions positively with conviction and enthusiasm​​.

Step 3: Manage Backdoor Referrers

Many employers will seek “backdoor” referrals, i.e. referrals who work with you but are not in you people on the list. These types of references may be more true in how they describe you — or less true if they are in direct conflict with you. Unfortunately, as it happens, if you leave a company in an unprofessional manner and the hiring manager knows people who work there, your candidacy may fail. Even if you have grown or learned from your experiences since then, your previous behaviors may haunt you. Check LinkedIn for mutual connections that may not provide a positive backdoor reference. Maybe a former colleague is now at a new company you want to work for. If you find the interconnectedness of knowing you and your work, determine if it’s worth contacting them to discuss what they think of you. Even if you can’t find contacts, you know the world is small and people know people. When a colleague of mine was in the final stages of interviewing for a new job, the hiring manager was careful to ask if he was still actively working at his current company—they heard conflicting information about whether he was leaving the company. Apparently, the hiring manager knew he was on leave, and he was on the job until he was fired by the political reshuffle. He replied that while he was being paid, he was not working because he was on leave due to some short-term medical issues, but planned to return soon. He could hear the skepticism and concern in the voice of the hiring manager, knowing that his candidacy was struggling. He proposes connecting hiring managers with someone who can confirm that taking time off is not more evil. The hiring manager called me and dug deeper, without asking why he was taking the leave. No personal details of my colleague were revealed or mentioned that he would not be fired through no fault of his own, but my passion and belief in his work, character and integrity were able to convince the hiring manager to make the final leap and offer him this Role. He is now in the top management.

. . .

The best way to ensure that everyone you work with has a positive opinion of you is to develop a solid working relationship. In every job, find champions who understand your values. If you notice a relationship suffers because you may have offended someone or didn’t bring out your best, consider repairing the relationship through a reflection session. Discuss your memories of your work at the time and explain what you learned or could have done better, even if you think someone else contributed to the conflict. Demonstrating self-awareness and growth may change the perspective of future backdoor references. Would you rather be right, or be employed in your dream job? You can’t stop people from speaking ill of you, but you can grow from each experience and show your growth at the next opportunity.
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