If more people acted like Miguel Olave did at a recent interview, maybe, just maybe, companies would pay extra attention to their treatment of job candidates.
According to his LinkedIn profile, Miguel is a dad and mental health speaker who is open to joining a marketing or sales team. In a post on the networking site, he admitted that for the first time ever, he walked out before an interview had even begun—35 minutes past the scheduled start time!
But it wasn’t the waiting that bothered him; rather, it was the behavior of the head of HR, whom he recognized from doing research.
“Twice, the head of HR walked into the lobby.
“Twice she missed an opportunity to simply acknowledge me.
“No ‘good morning.’
“No ‘we’re running a little behind.’
“Absolutely no greeting,” he wrote.
Miguel said that if she hadn’t ignored him, he “would’ve gladly waited.”
He continued, “It was the feeling of not being equal.
“My time not being respected.
“Actions speak louder than words.”
When he left, he explained why. He later received a call from an entry-level employee, who told him why they fell short. Miguel wrote that he would have preferred an explanation from the head of HR herself, because she was the one who “failed.”
“This was deeper than just a ‘hectic morning.’
“In the end, three missed opportunities to connect & show me they were human,” he wrote.
Ending his now-viral post, which has over 23k reactions, he asked LinkedIn what they would have done.
Many agreed he made the right call by listening to his gut. They noted that the HR head’s behavior was unprofessional and an indicator of the company’s workplace culture.
Gino Williams commented, “At a bare minimum, HR is about courtesy. It would have taken a few passing seconds to acknowledge your presence, explain any delays, or even offer you a cup of water… No one is [that] busy or overwhelmed that they can’t be respectful.”
“I would’ve left as well. Time is money and they were disrespecting you and your time. Imagine how they are to work with,” added Bonnie Negron.
“Finding, hiring and retaining the best and brightest requires those of us who do the hiring to put our best foot forward every time there’s an opportunity to engage with a candidate. After all, interviews are a two-way street… The fact that this HR director didn’t even have the good sense to recognize and own the mistake tells you all you need to know about the company’s culture,” wrote Greg Steffine.
Meanwhile, others felt he should have given the company the benefit of the doubt.
“You have no idea what the person was going through at that time. You were there at their invitation and if you had waited you would have learned more about the character of who you were dealing with as opposed to making an uninformed decision based on your off-the-cuff feelings,” replied Brian Johnson.
But many more applauded him for teaching that company a lesson. Michaelene M. wrote, “You stood up for more than just yourself… You stood up for many people around the world who patiently sat in the lobby waiting their turn. Employers may gain useful insights into how their interview processes work and don’t work, before they even say one word!”
Kudos to Miguel for taking a stand. If businesses want to attract talent, they need to remember job candidates are human too—and exhibit the same professionalism and respect they seek in potential employees.