Ghosting occurs when a recruiter, or candidate fails to respond to email messages, does not show up for an interview, or drops out of the hiring process with no notice. With more job openings than lawyers, this trend is likely to continue.
Why ghosting occurs.
As a consequence of the pandemic, recruiting and job searches have shifted online. Ghosting in the context of a job search occurs for many reasons—
- Not replying to a recruiter’s email or voicemail at any stage of the process.
- Not responding to questions about the candidates work or references.
- Having bombed the interview, the candidate fails to respond to follow ups from the recruiter.
- Not showing initiative and being too passive in their interest for the position. If you are not interested in the job, the recruiter feels your wasting their time.
Attorneys also get ghosted by recruiters, although the reasons seem unclear –
- Timing. A law firm is no longer hiring for that position, as they have simply changed their focus or priorities.
- The recruiter dropped the ball or was overwhelmed having never responded back to the candidate and the firm has most likely since filled that position.
- The candidate bombs the interview, consequently the recruiter no longer views you as a priority and does not follow up.
Why ghosting is a bad idea.
Regardless of the hiring process stage, always respond to phone calls or messages promptly. If you are holding out for an opportunity, or have an offer you’re considering, be transparent and communicate that to the recruiter.
Don’t burn bridges; being unprofessional can seriously damage your reputation and impact your ability to garner future opportunities.
Honesty is the best policy. Best practices.
Regardless of the circumstance or situation, it is critical as a candidate to communicate clearly why you are no longer interested in a position. As a recruiter, it is equally important to communicate why the candidate is no longer being considered.
Being tactful on both sides of the recruitment process is advisable. Maintain a professional approach when following up and respectfully concluding your business.
The legal industry is a limited pool of attorneys. Those who conduct themselves unprofessionally eventually will earn a bad reputation in the legal community. Remember, your reputation is all you’ve got. Protect it.
Now is the time to start strategically to look at your future.
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