Re: Hiring through networking

Subject: Re: Hiring through networking
From: David Castro <techwrtr -at- CRL -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 21 Feb 1997 17:05:32 -0800

At 04:22 PM 2/21/97 -0700, Ellie Lief wrote:
>I'm an EOE. After 10 years in this industry, I know many excellent tech
>writers. But I'm not limiting myself to hiring people I already know. It's
>easy as a hiring manager to think, "I know *I* can do this job, therefore,
>the safest thing is to hire someone just like me." I think the technical
>term for this style of hiring is "the good old boys' network." Even though
>none of us intend to discriminate, I believe each of us, as employers, has
>to actively resist the natural human tendency to be more comfortable with
>people who look and act like we do.

While it is good to have diversity (I have the privilege to work with a
diverse group), it is also risky hiring people. When you hire someone, even
if there is a "probationary period" at the beginning, you're likely to be
stuck with the person. And, what is the likelyhood that you will *really*
get to know a person's writing style, working style, research skills,
interpersonal skills, and all of the other facets that will affect that
person's ability to perform the job in the short span of time that is
considered "probationary."

However, if you are looking for someone to fill a position, and a person is
recommended by a colleague, you are more likely to find someone who has the
skills necessary to make it in your environment. It's a little less of a
"pig in a poke." No matter what management says about you making the choice
in hiring, if the person turns out to be a lemon, they're going to come to
you to ask why you hired the bozo.

-David Castro
techwrtr -at- crl -dot- com

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