Weddle: The Goodness of Our Character Has Never Been More Important

Advice from online-recruiting-guru Peter Weddle today, on handling a slower economy:

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This rising tide of new applicants converging with the gale force buffeting going on in our own organizations creates a perfect storm for uncharacteristically bad behavior. The disruption and uncertainty it produces will undoubtedly increase the stress and anxiety we feel on-the-job, we feel about our own well-being. Those emotions are difficult to bear, but for us, they can have a doubly pernicious effect. Not only can they eat away at our self-confidence, but they can undermine and weaken our sense of self, as well.

Hard as it is to accept, awful economic fundamentals can negatively affect the fundamentals of our character and cause us to act awfully. They can push us from patience to impatience, from even-tempered to short-tempered, from willing to listen to unwilling to listen and worse. They can induce us to forget that applicants are just like us. They are working men and women who, just three months ago, thought everything was fine in their lives, only to discover three weeks ago that it wasn’t. They are our neighbors, our friends, our relatives, our coworkers and our bosses. And they deserve better.

So, let’s resolve to give it to them. However distressed the economic fundamentals may be, let’s stand by the strong fundamentals of our character. Whatever our role — whether we’re an HR professional or a corporate or third party recruiter — let’s reaffirm our commitment to compassion and thoughtfulness, to caring and courtesy, to kindness and respectfulness and to basic human decency. There has been no run on those attributes. Today, we are just as good as we were before this mess began, and we can be just as good — and maybe even better — as long as it lasts and beyond. Indeed, the goodness of our character has never been more important and more needed in the workplace. Now more than ever, we must stick to our fundamentals and our commitment to using them in our work.

That’s my modest plan for these hard times. Let’s remember who we are no matter how bad the evening news may get. Let’s stand by the caliber of the person we have always been no matter what the pressures may be on-the-job. Let’s teach those who were greedy and self-indulgent what true wealth — the wealth of the human spirit — is all about. Let’s be recruiting professionals who understand what fundamentals really count and let’s put our faith and future in them so that others can come to appreciate their value.

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3 Comments on “Weddle: The Goodness of Our Character Has Never Been More Important

  1. Todd,

    I couldn’t agree more. Our true character is always revealed during times of stress and challenge. I have taught my children that your character is who you are when no one is looking or you won’t get caught.

    The upside to these challenging times is that you can develop relationships with people that might otherwise rebuff such opportunities. Even if we cannot help them directly, our actions will hopefully leave a positive lasting impression.

    Sadly as you noted, the temptation is sometimes too much for some and they make poor choices. This is another opportunity for us to guide and council if appropriate. If unchecked, their moment of weakness can snowball, but a few wise words of counsel can help snap them out of their delusional state and again leave a very positive impression.

    Lets all hang tough as this too shall pass.

    Charles Haines
    Managing Partner
    Allen Adell Executive Search & Consulting

  2. Excellent advice! We know what it feels like to be in the position described in the article. We know how we wanted to be treated during such a difficult time. This is a perfect application of the Golden Rule: “Treat others as you would like to be treated.”

    Good word!

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