Unfortunately, candidates in today’s market sometimes engage in what might be termed “short-term behavior.” That means they make decisions and say and do things that might appear to benefit them in the short term. However, those same things could come back to “haunt” them in the long run.
In other words, these candidates are “burning bridges.”
One of the problems with today’s market is that it’s lulling candidates into a false sense of security. What does that mean? It means it encourages them to do things that they wouldn’t normally do under other circumstances.
It’s true that there is a scarcity of top candidates in some industries and/or niches, including niches within Engineering and Information Technology. This means the top candidates that do exist have more options and they have more leverage.
However, that leverage should be used to strategically advance one’s career in an intelligent fashion, not to “burn bridges” in a quest to advance at all costs.
What are some examples of “burning bridges”?
#1—“Ghosting” on the phone interview
This means that you schedule a phone interview, but then you simply do not show up for it. Yes, it’s not a huge inconvenience, but it’s still an inconvenience, one that the hiring manager may not forget.
#2—“Ghosting” on the offer
This is one that a hiring manager will definitely not forget. This means that an employer made an offer to you, either through the hiring manager or a recruiter. You tell the hiring manager or recruiter that you need a day or two to think about it. Then you disappear off the face of the Earth. Well, you don’t really disappear, but the hiring manager or the recruiter never hears from you again. You can see how that could leave a bad taste in somebody’s mouth.
#3—Not showing up for your first day of work
Speaking of leaving a bad taste in somebody’s mouth, this one might “take the cake.” (Although the hiring manager or recruiter might not think that it’s cake they’re eating.) An employer extends an offer, you accept it, and then you disappear off the face of the Earth.
So why might you have “ghosted” on the offer and also not shown up for your first day of work? Perhaps because you received what you considered was a better offer from another organization and you decided to take that one instead. Then, on top of that, you didn’t let anybody know what you were doing. You just “hung them out to dry.”
This is the very definition of making decisions and saying and doing things that might appear to benefit you in the short term. This is also the very definition of “burning bridges.” And there are other ways to do so other than the three that we’ve presented here.
Keep in mind that this candidates’ market is NOT going to last forever. That would be impossible. Eventually, the market is going to turn and a recession is going to begin. When that happens, the last thing you want is for “burned bridges” to stop you from moving your career in the direction you want to move it.
The Doepker Group has experience placing candidates in the Information Technology and Engineering industries, and we can place you, as well.