It’s seven short answers to seven short questions. Here we go…
1. Who makes the final hiring decision?
I have a panel job interview tomorrow morning that will consist of Human Resource Specialists and my supervisor (if I get the job). My question is, who ultimately makes the hiring decision — HR or your potential supervisor?
The manager for the position, unless the company is horribly run. HR shouldn’t be making final hiring decisions. In some cases, HR might make decisions on who passes an initial screening, before candidates go to the hiring manager, but by the time the hiring manager is involved in interviews, she’s the one who should be making decisions. (Note that hiring manager = the person who would be managing you, not “manager of all hiring.”)
2. Can an employer prohibit you from dating a client?
My question stems from your article about how companies can prohibit coworkers from dating coworkers. I have a lady-friend who currently works at the plasma center that I frequent, who I’ve known for about a year (which is longer than she’s had the job!). And when she signed her work contract, they say they strictly forbid dating coworkers and donors, and supposedly they can terminate her for it. While I’m not going to risk her job to date her (as she has a young child take care of and raise), I’m wondering if an employer can bar you from dating someone who is a customer or client? And what if we had been dating before she was hired?
They can indeed. In many cases, employers have a vested interest in prohibiting employees from dating clients — if the relationship goes south, they could lose the client. Or the client might get different treatment than other clients. So it’s not hard to understand why employers would want to ensure that coworkers keep those relationships professional.
3. How should I point that this prospective job doesn’t seem like it should be a contract position?
I have an interview next week for a job that was listed as “full-time, contract.” In re-reading the job description, it sounds much more like an employee position than an independent contractor. Assuming that is indeed the case, if everything were to go well and I were to be offered the job, would this be something I should bring up before accepting?
The company is small and doesn’t seem to have an HR department–the office manager is the one setting everything up, and the initial interview will be with the hiring manager. It may be that they just don’t know the difference between contractors and employees (I had a previous job where that was the case, and they straightened it out on their own soon after hiring me). Would I be in a stronger position to discuss/negotiate this before or after accepting the job? Or is it most likely not up for discussion?
Wait until you have an offer — because at that point they’ve already decided that they want to hire you, whereas if you start complicating things for you before that point, they may find it easier to just go with a different candidate. Once you have an offer, say that you want to get clarification on the contractor status of the role, since the IRS regulations require that contractors ___. (Fill that in with whichever part of the regulations they’d be in violation of — for instance, that contractors control when, where, and how they do the job.) Say something like, “This sounds like it might actually be an employee position, using those guidelines.”
Approach this from the assumption that they simply don’t know or overlooked this (which is likely with a small business) and it shouldn’t be adversarial; if they respond adversarially, that’s a big red flag for you.
4. My son’s boss won’t deal with any problems
My son has a manager who will not deal with any issue, no matter what it is, whether it is personal problems, workload, occupational health and safety … there is always the same response of “If you don’t like it, there is the door.” My son is not the type to go at things aggressively. He thinks before he speaks, but this person is just plain rude about what he thinks of the workers’ ideas, rights, or issues. What do you suggest?
Your son probably needs to accept that this is how is boss is and/or find another job, since this guy doesn’t sound particularly open to changing. The exception would be if laws are being broken or people’s safety is being put at risk, in which case he should speak up and alert someone with some authority.
5. Do these signs mean my company isn’t going to hire me for a permanent position?
I am working for a company in a large metropolitan area. I’m a contractor hoping to be made perm. I took on a large amount of work because the company was short staffed. I didn’t realize, but I had a medical problem. I overworked and needed to take 3 weeks sick leave. I work really hard. Feedback is excellent on my work and I have been working well for past month.
I applied for the perm role but I feel like I’m not getting the job. I got no definite response. I really had to fight in the first instance for the interview. Apparently the company wants to see the full range of candidates prior to making a decision.
I’m not sure what to do, as my contract will come to an end shortly. Do you know if it is standard for companies to advertise a perm role for more than a month? Do you think the excuse of searching for a full range of candidates is an indication that I didn’t get the job? The company is really short staffed and there is only me doing the work, so it’s possible that they are stringing me along until they find someone else. Do you know how in general how companies manage this process?
Wanting to talk to more candidates can mean “we’re not especially excited about you for the job so we want to make sure we see who else is out there,” or it can mean “our policies require us to interview at least X candidates before we can make a hire,” or it can mean “we’re not hiring you and we’ll let you know that once we decide who we are hiring.” In other words, it’s all over the map, so you can’t really conclude anything from it. Similarly, advertising the job for more than a month isn’t that unusual so you can’t really read anything into that.
What you do know for sure, though, is that there are no guarantees that you’ll get this job, and that would be true even if they seemed wildly enthusiastic about you — so you should be actively job searching since your contract is ending soon. If you end up getting this job, then great — you can curtail your search. But you should be proceeding as if you don’t have and won’t get this job, until you have an offer letter in your hand.
6. Can I reapply after interviewer expressed concerns about my ability to excel in the job?
I was interviewed for a customer service job last week, and everything seemed to go really smoothly. Because the company I applied for is asking for the job applicants to be available as early as possible, everything went quickly. Yesterday, however, I got the dreaded email saying I wasn’t chosen. I followed up right away, asking for feedback on how to put myself up better for other jobs.
The interviewer replied today, saying that my experience was just a bit under, but that wouldn’t be a problem in normal circumstances. However, because her team can get rather vocal about what needs to happen, she feels that I will get “snowed under” by the pressure. She ended her email with, “But maybe I misinterpret you.”
To my suprise, the job vanacy was reposted, maybe not even an hour later. I’m somewhat confused. Is reapplying a good idea, or would that make me come across in a bad way? I’m really interested in the job, but I also don’t want to come across in a bad way and ruin my chances on the job market in my current industry/area. (It’s an industry where everybody literally knows each other, and one mistake can ruin a lot here.)
Do you think there’s merit to her feedback? Would you thrive in an environment where expectations are high and people are aggressive and maybe even pushy? If you think you’d do well there, why not email her back and tell her that, in fact, she might have misinterpreted you, give some examples of times you’ve excelled in that type of environment (or at least say that you’re not cowed by that kind of thing), and tell her you’d still love to be considered. (Don’t just reapply though — that would come across oddly since you’ve already been interviewed and you’re already in contact with her.)
7. How can I let me neighbor know I won’t be offended if she rejects me for a job?
Recently at a ladies social function in my neighborhood, my wife made the acquaintance of a woman who is a manager in my field of work. I had not previously met this person, as she had only moved in a few months ago. During the course of conversation, jobs came up and long story short, my wife came home with a business card and instructions for me to email my résumé to this manager.
I sent an introduction email, as well as my résumé, and although to say my qualifications matched would be a stretch, I was granted a phone screen and a face-to-face interview. During the interview, it was mentioned that the hiring would probably be on a temp basis with the option to go full-time. Here is where I need your help. How do I communicate to her that it is okay if she goes with another candidate and if after the temp part she cuts me loose if hired? The only knowledge she has of me as a person and professional is what she gleaned in the interview. I don’t want her to feel any obligation based solely on the fact I live four houses down. While I would be disappointed, I am not about to go all DeNiro stalker crazy person. Would it look like I was down playing my interest by communicating that before the decision is made? Also, if I don’t get selected, I would very much like the chance at an informational interview and to maintain her as a contact because her company will be bringing in a lot of remora companies that I might be able to get on with.
Well, first, she’s probably not worrying that you’ll become a crazy stalker. She’s probably assuming sanity on your part, and most hiring managers are reasonably comfortable with having to turn people down. Plus, since you noted that your qualifications weren’t a great match for the position, she has a perfectly easy way to do it — she can easily point to that.
That said, you could certainly send her an email thanking her for her time, telling her how much you enjoyed talking to her, and adding that if the fit isn’t right for this particular role, you’d love to stay in touch with her. That conveys that you’re not assuming the job is yours and that you’re a mature, sensible adult without going overboard.