Is It The Feedback You Were Hoping For?

By Chris Cochran

We want to hear what our client has to say about a candidate after the interview and the same goes for the candidate – we want to hear what they thought of our client. Positive feedback from both parties is crucial to creating a match that results in an accepted offer. Negative feedback is almost never good. But, if you’re a candidate, it can be helpful for improvement purposes. If it’s coming from a client, perhaps your search could be modified to improve your chances for landing the dream candidate. I thought I’d share a few examples of what we consider good feedback.

Good feedback from the client about a candidate:

“They were really listening to my description of our current vendor relationship and had some excellent questions that I hadn’t thought to ask (of the vendor).” Be known as a “listener.”

“They had great examples of being in the same position as we are now. I really liked the insight they shared. Smart stuff.” Don’t wait for the interviewer to ask you to give examples – just go right into it.

“I like that they had specific measurements to convey the effectiveness of their previous program experience. They used the numbers to tell a story.” It’s great when a designer does this because it’s a bit unexpected – that left brain shows itself.

“They said they worked to understand who their audience was – we spent a surprising ten minutes talking all about me and my career. No one has ever done that with me.” Doing what you said you do – novel idea, eh?.

“How can you not like them?” It’s good to be liked.   

Good feedback from the candidate about a client:

“We knew a lot of the same people given our previous companies that we’ve been with before.” How often have you heard, “It’s who you know?” This familiarity with other people makes a conversation go just a bit smoother. Commonalities are a beautiful thing!

“It sounds like they’re in the same position we were in not too long ago. I love the challenge.”Experienced, positive people are always going to be in demand.

“I was really impressed – I think I could learn a lot.” Great candidates seek out growth opportunities.

“They were already talking about the second interview with the other people in the group.” It’s nice when they tell you this. But, if they haven’t, be sure to ask them about next steps before you leave.

These examples would all be good to hear, no doubt. We don’t always get such clear comments from clients or candidates. Sometimes, it’s as simple as, “It went good.” The important thing was how it was said and then it’s all about their tone. Great feedback in terms of both content and tone is music to our ears.