Inclusive recruitment? Really?

So much talk of inclusion. We are barely scratching the surface. I have recently had a couple of interviews – I am not used to them, most of my work comes from conversations, word of mouth and/or head hunting – and it was very clear that in standard interviews anyone with any neurodivergence is immediately disadvantaged. Most roles, even those at this level (CEO/ED/NED) do not often require immediate decisions and when they do there is backstory and planning to support those decisions. And yet mainstream interviews have little real space for reflection and pause, ebb and flow. A snapshot of instant answers, many of which are sound bites learned by candidates to offer “correct” answers, is almost all that is achieved. I understand the need for engagement and assessment of capacity during recruitment, I have been on all sides of that table! And I get that good recruiters have a “sense”. But surely by now we can think more creatively? And I don’t mean those little “IQ” tests or forced and awkward tea and bun moments, although those are in reality probably more helpful. I would have thought a record of achievement, a relevant history, a degree of synergised character and vision, and a clear commitment were at the top of the list for recruiters and those are often not best assessed by rote. The best have a conversation with candidates, questions are almost invisible, answers elicited with skill and care. There is a way to ensure that all candidates have a similar experience, and therefore equal opportunities, without tick-boxing our way through it.

This isn’t a pop at recruiters (some of my best friends…), or a complaint, it is a look at how we can recruit more inclusively. As someone with a level of neurodivergence perhaps I am more keenly alive to areas for improvement. Also having been around a long (long) time I have many and varied experiences to compare and differences to note. We have come quite a long way but I think it is clear we have further to go.

Finally, I think it is likely that recruiters and employers sometimes miss the very people who would bring the most value to the role they wish to fill simply through adherence to traditional ways of interviewing or recruiting. That is both sad and a waste and to my knowledge has led to challenges and problems further down the line that may have been avoided by better recruitment. I should also add that I had a good “interview” recently, with people who didn’t mind being human, who seemed actually interested in the person and responded to that, and who had charm and empathy. It isn’t hard…

#work #recruitment #opportunities #people #inclusion #engagement

Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: