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Crab Fishing in Alaska

By Mark Evarts, Tomahawk Recruitment, April 19, 2019

#bestrecruiting #tomahawkrecruitment #recruiterswhocare


There was once a young man who applied for a job, which required a skillset slightly beyond his level of experience. The employer was quite impressed with him and sensed he would be a good fit, but needed something more tangible, something beyond his gut instinct. He noticed a two-year gap in the job seeker’s employment history and asked what he did during this time. Somewhat reluctantly, the job seeker responded, ‘crab fishing in Alaska’.


The employer was relieved, ‘Oh, why didn’t you tell me sooner?’, he said. He knew that the type of aptitude required for that kind of work, coupled with his previous experience, would be a perfect match for the role.


Alex, the job seeker, landed the gig and was indeed very successful.


Sifting for Gold

Most recruiters look to draw a direct correlation between what people have done and the role outline. It actually makes logical sense as most recruiters must also manage challenging deliverables.


However, the real gold is in understanding what people are capable of, not what they’ve done.


Unfortunately, the best candidates are often missed because they don’t fit into a square box. I can speak from direct experience as I often found it difficult to land jobs. In fact, I can’t remember a time when a recruiter knew what to do with me, let alone place me in a role. My best, most interesting, and most successful roles where offered to me by entrepreneurs and visionaries who had the wherewithal to see outside the box.


The simple fact is that ‘there's gold in them thar hills’, and there’s a place for recruiters who have the time, inclination, and the magic eye to go a’ sifting.


Do You Have a Magic Eye?

Remember those Magic Eye images that captivated us all in the 90s?


A Magic Eye image was essentially a 3D image hidden within a 2D pattern. It was actually a very clever form of stereogram that had its birth some 30 years earlier by neuroscientist and psychologist Bela Julesz in order to test people’s ability to see in 3D.


Personally, I had the most success in discovering the 3D image by blurring my vision, or going a little crosseyed and almost focussing to the back of the the picture. At some point, I would start to see ‘into’ the image and the 3D object would emerge. The sensation is like and endorphin rush as I feel myself being invited into another world.


Can you see the guitar in the pic below?


It can take a bit of time but here’s a hint...










As recruiters, our job is to find the hidden treasure that lies beyond the flat image. It’s in the way we read CVs, create shortlists and interact with candidates. The better we are at doing this, the more value we bring to our clients, our candidates, and to our industry.

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