I know it seems simple. But that question, “tell me about your last great day,” tells me a lot about a person.
It tells me what they enjoy, and where they thrive. It shows me what this person does, beyond the buzzwords of a job post or made-up job title. But more than enlightening me on the person, it shows me the culture of the company. It’s noticeable when someone hasn’t had a great day in a while. The pregnant pause. The awkward silence. It’s hard to conjure up a last great day when they are so few and far between.
On the other hand, there’s something powerful and palpable about joy. It’s contagious, especially at work. Why?
Well, I’m sure there are psychological reasons but here’s the recruiting version I’m stuck on - your best people have a similar idea of a great day. Case and point: We are working on a project for an in-demand clinical role supporting kids with autism. These people can quit today and have an offer in their hand tomorrow.
But they stay anyway.
Why? There are a million reasons, but this stood out to me most: every single person I interviewed said “yesterday was my last best day.” This response came from CEOs down to hourly employees.
After the 6th person, I thought maybe it was a joke. But it wasn’t. They are so passionate about helping those kids that despite literally being beaten up, they’re living another great day because this family feels progress in their daily routines. They stay because they know millions of kids need help, and they are living their purpose.
Meaning matters most. Unfortunately, that’s exactly where most writing for recruiting goes wrong. So many people live this incredible story. But instead of telling our story our way, we try to be creative. In the process, we abandon meaning altogether. That’s what I wrote about in my blog of the week. I have a few more posts here that I think you’ll love, too.
Have a great week -