How Storytelling Helps Recruiters Tell the Right Story to Sell the Candidate

I recently came across an article on HR Bartender, Use Storytelling to Create Employee Engagement. This article inspired me to think beyond the normal realms of employment branding as a form of storytelling but as a way for the recruiter to sell their client company’s story. In the article it refers the two as very much aligned and that storytelling can connect candidates and employees with your organization.

So what is storytelling? Storytelling is the social and cultural activity of sharing stories. These stories or narratives have been shared in every culture as a means of entertainment, education, cultural preservation and a way to instill moral values.

When looking at the definition of storytelling it mirrors what employment branding’s function is and how you can utilize it to connect with candidates. The employment branding team is taking your company’s activity and sharing the employee stories and company’s stories on their blogs, social channels and career site. These stories are something you as the recruiter should use to sell your position and navigate throughout each conversation you have with candidates.

Recruiting is essentially a multi-billion-dollar storytelling industry.

Your main goal is to sell the company and job to potential candidates. It is again, an act of storytelling for the hope and exchange of a sign, sealed and delivered: YOU’RE HIRED.

Let’s break it down. The four basic principles of storytelling are:

  1. Be positive
  2. Be true
  3. Be succinct
  4. Show growth

In employment branding and recruiting you must sell the candidate on your client’s company and position. When we apply the four basic principles of storytelling to the act of recruiting they again mirror one another.

As a recruiter it is your job to be positive. Even if that client sucks and this job is truly a dead beat job, at the end of the day you still have to fill it, and portraying positivity to candidates will help. Through the works of your employment branding team—who I am sure have done a kick a$$ job of representing the company in a positive way—it is your duty to put all your beef with that client or company behind to make sure the candidate has a good hiring experience and will get the job. Positive Mental Attitude people!

Being true and being succinct are the same, but different.  If you have something negative to tell your candidate, follow it up with three positives. This way you aren‚Äôt hiding or lying about any negatives but you are building credibility in the eyes of the candidate with the positive. Lying has never gotten anyone far in life unless you consider jail a faraway place. When you are true and honest with your candidates you will build a stronger relationship that will help the both of you get to your end goal.

Be succinct with your candidates, the more direct you talk to them and the sooner you get to the point of them getting hired, the faster the process will be. Don’t lead candidates on, if your hiring manager doesn’t like them and sees no future with them, then tell them. In the long run this will build your own credibility with the candidate if you need them in any other future roles. At the end of the day, don’t play games and lead them on, there is enough of that in the dating world.

Lastly, telling stories through employment branding allows candidates to see the growth of a company, whether that be the overall employee growth, which indicates that the business is healthy and prosperous or employee professional growth, which shows career progression. In recruiting you can use the growth of your clients’ company and their employees to show candidates that the client is growing, prospering and the place they NEED to work at.

If you use storytelling within your recruiting strategy already then this article was nothing new, but if you don’t use the story your employment branding team is writing, we encourage you to. If you utilize the story your employment branding team is creating and you use it as your own story, we bet you’ll be signing, sealing and delivering a lot more of YOU’RE HIRED emails.

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