We as Recruiters/HR get this all the time, manager wants a Sr. Java Developer with 10 years of experience for $75,000/year or a CPA with 5 years of public accounting experience for $65,000/year.
We sit on the call or the meeting and have this dumbfounded look on our faces. “Is this person serious?” We think about when was the last time they hired someone to have these expectations in this day and age.
What do you do? Do you tell them that they are out of their minds if they think they will get that skill set for that price. What can you do? Let me tell you what you can do in this situation with an unrealistic expectation.
You let them talk. Let them tell you all of their “must-haves” and “nice to haves”. They will tell you about how this person will need to have this, this and this. And while they are talking you listen, not to respond but to actually understand.
Once they are done talking, you reiterate what you heard to make sure you got it right. Now comes the best and exciting part. You are the expert in hiring this skill set, share your expertise with confidence. I recently had a similar conversation with a client. I followed my rules and then told the client that their expectations are unrealistic.
I let them know that in this market if they want someone with that experience they aren’t going to get it for that price. And I told them the price that they should look at. Now, I don’t really know if the client appreciated this, but they did say that they are willing to go to the price if the candidate is truly qualified. Fair Enough! I count this as success.
The managers don’t know the market, their job isn’t to know the market. Their job is to know what they do, whether it be in Technology, Engineering, Accounting or whichever field. You know the market, share your knowledge with them. Knowledge isn’t Pie, where if you share it, you will have less of it.
But always remember to do it with tact, you don’t want to sound arrogant, or Mr./Miss Know-it-all even if you are.