There are many reasons why I love a good episode of 30 Rock on a Thursday night. Part of it is because the show itself is hilarious. Part of it is simply timing and the anticipation of the weekend ahead. Last night, another part involved the surprising application of the plot to my life as a recruiter. Without a doubt, the campus recruiting process can often seem as chaotic as Audition Day at TGS.
One of the most important lessons I have learned in my job is the value of understanding the “big picture” of an individual’s fit as a candidate. As consultants, our professionals interact with one another in fast-paced environments, on high-stress projects, and at far-flung client locations which may keep them on the road for long periods of time. It is critical that our people find ways to relate to one another beyond the standard water cooler small talk and weekly staff meeting. For this reason, our recruiting process must capture a candidate’s technical aptitude as well as the non-technical skills that he or she may exhibit. This approach helps us prevent the kind of mistake that Liz Lemon made in jumping to a conclusion on Jayden Michael Tyler.
Of course, the storyline does not have a direct correlation to the consulting world – For example, there will likely never be a stand-up component to our interviews. But 30 Rock did manage to highlight some of the recruiting nightmares that candidates and employers alike work very hard to avoid.