Ghosting has been a common practice in today’s human behavior. This behavior started socially with the advent of millennials and online dating. As a professional recruiter, I have seen this practice move beyond dating and into the world of how companies and candidates communicate with each other. Professional ghosting has now become a wide spread phenomenon used within recruiters and the industry where candidates do not show up for interviews (even virtually) and they “vanish” from the interviewing process without a courtesy e-mail or phone call.
Why Does This Happen?
Usually ghosting exists when we have bad news to share or there is something bothering us about the other party. We don’t know how to communicate this said news. We decide to not tell the other party and we start to cease communications. Although each party wants closure, it is always best to communicate the bad news sooner rather than later. Acting professional and having common courtesy are important when finding a new role. We have reached an age of information overload and multi-tasking and not being focused on the task is a common problem.
A simple “Thank you but no thanks” is better than ignoring the person or avoiding the task at hand. Ghosting has become a common place in today’s society it has even creeped into the professional world.
How Does Professional Ghosting Exist in the Recruiting World?
Professional ghosting is a term used within the recruitment industry. This is shown when a candidate shows an initial interest in a role or job (through acceptance of an Indeed Job Invite or LinkedIn InMail) but fails to follow through with the rest of the recruitment process. The candidate stops responding to the recruiter or employer and it can go as far as a) not showing up for interviews (even virtual meetings), or b) acting either “too busy” and “overwhelmed” that a common e-mail or phone call is too much for the person. Basic e-mail and communication ceases with the recruiter or employer and the candidate “vanishes” without being able to reached ever again.
Expectations Between Parties
There is a lot of pressure when a recruiter contacts you for a role. Many thoughts start running through your mind. Do I like what I’m doing? Is my boss ok to work for? Is it greener on the other side? Instead of ignoring the email or phone call, candidates should pay attention to what a recruiter has to say. After hearing about the opportunity and you find the role is not suitable for you, a simple “Thanks but No Thanks” is all a recruiter needs to hear in order to provide closure to the issue. Both parties can move on to other business.
Why Does Professional Ghosting Exist?
We live in the age of information overload. With Social Media (Facebook, Instagram, E-mail, SMS, Text), we are constantly being bombarded with information that sometimes require our attention. Because of this, we start to lose focus as our mind wanders and we begin to have trouble staying focused. IRL (In Real Life) meetings have become a distant past within the last 16 months and the level of human interaction has diminished. It has become easier for us to “Swipe Right” (Interested) or “Swipe Left” (Not Interested) rather than face our problems head-on. Our lack of communication within the last 16 months has made it easier for people to ignore or vanish from society.
How Do I Prevent being Professionally Ghosted?
Professional Ghosting exists in our society but it is a not a social norm that should be tolerated in the professional world. As a recruiter, I found that candidates who receive job offers have 3 things in common. They:
a) Have common courtesy to respond to e-mails/phone by a recruiter or employer
b) Act professionally when you receive said e-mail or phone call
c) Show up on-time for the interview with the role and company well researched with a motivation that you want the ‘said’ job.
The above 3 points seem pretty basic. Everybody can do them without the required technical skill or knowledge of the job itself. Above all, I believe we have to be focused and block out the bombardment of E-mails, Text, Phone Calls and Social Media newsfeed that we are regularly bombard us with.
If Candidates follow the above three points, it will more likely lead candidates to a job offer at the end of the recruitment process.