We’ve all heard of moms and dads who become too involved in a child’s science fair project, book report or college application. According to a new OfficeTeam survey, this type of hovering, also known as “helicopter parenting,” extends to the job search, too.
Executives interviewed were asked to recount the most unusual or surprising behaviour they had heard of or witnessed from the parent of a job seeker. Here are some of their responses:
- “One parent wanted to sit in during the interview.”
- “A parent called a politician to push me to hire his son.”
- “A mother submitted her daughter’s resume on her behalf.”
- “Someone stopped an employer at a grocery store to ask that person to hire her child.”
- “A parent called to ask about a job applicant’s work schedule and salary.”
- “A parent called during the interview to try to push me to hire her daughter.”
- “I received a call from a father asking about the status of his son’s application.”
- “A parent came by my desk and told me that he expected his daughter to get preference for a position since he was a manager at the company.”
- “A mother called to ask how her child did in the job interview.”
- “A parent called to find out why we did not hire her son and why we felt he was not qualified.”
The survey was developed by OfficeTeam, a leading staffing service specializing in the placement of highly skilled administrative professionals. It was conducted by an independent research firm and is based on telephone interviews with more than 1,300 senior managers at companies with 20 or more employees in the United States and Canada.
“Although most parents mean well, those who become overly involved in a child’s job search can derail their son or daughter’s prospects of being hired because companies may question the applicant’s level of independence and maturity,” said Robert Hosking, executive director of OfficeTeam. “New graduates should steer their parents away from direct contact with potential employers and toward behind-the-scenes guidance and networking assistance.”
OfficeTeam identifies five ways for professionals to effectively leverage their parents’ help in the job search:
1. Branch out. Networking is still one of the best ways to find a job. A parent’s friends and colleagues can help set up introductory meetings with employers and alert you to opportunities.
2. Give it another look. Have parents review your resume and cover letter. They can spot typos and other errors and make sure the most valuable information is included.
3. Do a test run. Conduct mock interviews with parents to practice responses to common questions. Ask for constructive feedback on your answers and delivery.
4. Weigh your options. Use your parents as a sounding board about potential opportunities. They can provide a different perspective and bring up points to consider in your decision.
5. Get encouragement. Looking for a job can be difficult, and it’s important to remain positive. Seek parental advice and support throughout the process to keep on track.
OfficeTeam is a leading staffing service specializing in the temporary placement of highly skilled office and administrative support professionals. The company has more than 300 locations worldwide and offers online job search services at http://www.officeteam.com/.
For further information: Nadia Santoli, (416) 350-2330, [email protected]