Barry DeutschAlmost all job postings, yours included, describe the absolute minimally acceptable qualifications. Why aim low? You know people will stretch their credentials and experience a bit to apply, so describing the least you will accept will attract many résumés that are totally inappropriate. Sound familiar? Here’s the antidote, with credit and thanks to Vistage speaker Barry Deutsch,  my guru for job ads. Some of his advice and training for hiring managers is here. Click here for much more from him.


Based on my memory of his talks and seeing the principles applied by many of my clients, here are some of the keys for writing an ad that attracts the right candidates:


  • When searching for a person to fill a job opening it seems natural to describe the history of the person you are seeking. That’s a mistake.
    • You’re not in business to hire people.
      You’re in business to create results. Therefore…
    • Don’t describe the person–describe the results that person must produce to be successful.
  • Spend more time on what the person will be doing than what the company does.
    • Good candidates will go to the website to learn about you. Disqualify the ones who do not.
  • Write it from the seeker’s point of view, in the second person.
    • You love to help people get in action on their problems
    • You can’t walk away from your desk until everything is double checked, logged, and filed.
  • Describe breakout success
    • Too many job ads and descriptions detail the minimum requirements.
    • Describe outstanding success in detail, with numbers and vivid examples.
  • Make it interesting and compelling; describe a place the right candidate would be eager to go every day.
    • Sell your culture and values. Employees who resonate with your fundamentals will be productive long-term.



See also, on this blog,
Google Data Show ‘Behavioral Interviewing’ Works