How many times did you hear, “You don’t have enough experience.” while looking for your first job?
I heard that statement many times during my search. It was a strange situation. I didn’t have enough experience for them, but I couldn’t get any because many of them would only hire people with experience.
It was a Catch-22.
We all start our careers somewhere, and most of us start without any experience after finishing school and in a junior position. Slowly, we gained more experience from our more senior colleagues, mentors, and from all the mistakes that we made along the way.
We grew into more senior roles.
You can’t become a senior member of an organization if you don’t have any experience. None of us immediately started in a senior role without, first, learning our craft. This is applicable not only to recruiters but to other professions, too. But we often forget about that first year when we struggled trying to find our place.
Don’t forget where you came from
Recently, I saw a number of LinkedIn posts where people shared that junior recruiters don’t have enough experience to interview managers and directors. One post, in particular, stuck in my mind. A manager believed that he should speak only with the senior recruiter and not the junior one, and he shared some details from his last interview.
He showed up for an interview for a new position, but when he found out that the junior recruiter would be the one conducting his interview him, he left. And based on that LinkedIn post, he seemed pretty proud of it. He left because the junior recruiter, in his opinion, did not have enough skills to assess his experience, and that only a senior recruiter could understand that.
My first reaction after I read that post was, “Is he serious?” followed by “Is he really a senior person?” because he’s not acting like one. Well, I can’t lie; my first reaction was something that I can’t post here.
I was curious about what other recruiters thought about this, so I shared his post and asked others if they had faced something like this in their careers.
I was lucky that I never had, but I remembered one situation that happened to one of my colleagues many years ago at a previous job. She was supposed to have an interview with a senior manager, but the manager canceled the interview with her because he was expecting to speak with a senior recruiter.