HELPING MAKE THE RIGHT HIRE.
Education: Degree in Agricultural Journalism from Texas A&M University
Career: Agricultural marketing and agency management; 29-year career at McCormick Company, including 15 years as the agency's President.
AM: Please tell us about the founding of Landajob and its activities.
MP: LandaJob, Inc. was founded in Kansas City in 1985 by Landa Williams, hence the name "LandaJob." From the outset, Landa focused the company's recruting services to find creative and marketing talent for corporations and advertising/communications agencies.
Today Landajob's focus is the same, even though "creative and marketing" has expanded to include SEO, SEM, social media, analytics, email, web design and UI/UX in addition to product managers, marketing managers, CMOs, public relations, copywriters, designers and paid media positions. LandaJob recruits for direct-hire positions, contract/temporary-only positions and contract-to-hire positions.
AM: What trend or trends are you seeing in the recruiting and staffing industry?
MP: The utilization of contract staffing is growing substantially. It offers employers the opportunity to dip into a larger pool of talent, use just-in-time solutions, and more than likely reduces a company's salary cost. For contractors, it provides flexibility and freshness.
Our model is to provide turn-key service to companies or agencies who want or need contract employees with specific specialties and experience by pre-qualifying them and providing them either on-site or off-site as Landajob's W-2 employees. It's easy for the employer (no more 1099s) and the job gets filled much faster compared to a full-time employee.
AM: When do you think people should make a change in their own career?
MP: First, don't stay in a job you don't like or with a boss who treats you poorly. It can impact your performance negatively and make you less employable when you finally decide to make a change.
If you've learned all you can and you long to do more, talk with your boss to see what's available. If your job feels like a cul-de-sac, it may be time to look at change.
AM: What tips do you have for people preparing for a job interview?
MP: Preparation is key. Learn all you can about the company, their industry, and the role from personal resources and, of course, myriad digital sources. Practice giving your elevator speech, which describes you and your career succinctly, as well as what you hope to accomplish in your next role. Be yourself--the best version of yourself.
AM: How about for the interviewer?
MP: Again, preparation is key. Begin with the company goals/ vision and how this particular role fits into that picture. With the 10,000 ft. view of a resume and Linked In profile, drill down to learn what a candidate hoped to acheive in their last job, and why they are considering leaving that job.
Hire slow, fire fast is the mantra for many sucessful employers.
Both you and the candidate are trying to get as much information as possible to ensure a skill and cultural fit.
AM: What professional courtesy practices should people have?
MP: * Return phone calls--if you call someone and leave a message, your expectation is that you will get a return call. The same goes for people who call you. If it's a legitimate business voice mail, even from a salesperson, make it a routine practice to return the call.
* Return emails--same principle applies above. Even a short response or a "no thanks" is better than no response at all.
* Update job candidates--it may surprise you, but many job seekers who interview for a position with a company never hear back from the person who interviewed them.
Make it a practice to personally call everyone that interviewed and let them know the outcome. At the very least, contact them via email. They will appreciate it and say good things about you and your company.
* Deliver bad news as quickly as good news--it's never fun or easy to share bad news, but it's the right thing to do and it's the right thing to do it timely. You'll feel better too because you eliminate the dread factor from your mind. Sometimes "just do it" is the exact right solution.
AM: Anything else you would like agri-marketers to know?
MP: Often times, no matter what the task, doing it yourself rather than utlilizing a professional costs more in the long run, especially when you factor in the cost of your time.
I think people tend to avoid using recruitment professionals because there is a misconception of how much it costs. In today's recruiting world, there are many different types of compensation options that make it much less expensive than people believe it to be.
The end result is getting better people faster, which is the goal for everyone.