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The Right Way To “Sell” Your Job To Candidates

When it comes to recruiting, business professionals often speak in terms of “selling the job” to prospective candidates. It is true that effectively recruiting involves somewhat of a sales approach. How you put this into practice, however, depends on how you define the term “selling”.

If you think of sales as convincing someone to take a position, you may want to rethink your definition. The goal is to find the right person for a job, and the right job for the person. You are not looking for someone you have to convince to take the job. The sales part is learning to effectively educate a candidate on all of the relevant factors of the job and allowing them to determine if it is the right fit.

Selling a job to a candidate in the wrong way can result in early turnover or general dissatisfaction and lack of engagement.

I encourage businesses to sell their positions the right way – focus on long-term fit, engagement, and retention. Here are a couple practical tips to do that:

Understand the employment experience at your company.

In order to effectively and accurately sell your position, you have to make sure that you have an accurate view of the company from the employee’s perspective. Setting accurate expectations is key.

§ What is the work culture like?

§ What are the expectations of the job?

§ What does a typical workday or workweek look like?

§ How many hours are they going to work?

§ What are the pay and benefits?

§ What are the intangible benefits (work/life balance, flexibility, meaningful work, etc.)?

Know the value proposition

The value proposition is what you are effectively selling. Recruiters and hiring managers need to know, and be comfortable articulating, the value proposition of their company. In other words, you need to answer the question “why would someone want to work for you in this position?”.

Don’t oversell.

This goes back to the idea of the importance of setting accurate expectations. Overselling the job can be detrimental to a new working relationship. It won’t take a new colleague long to figure out that what they were told before they were hired is not the reality of the job.


Learn how to effectively “sell” your opportunities by knowing the benefits of working for your company and setting accurate expectations. Give the candidate all of the information they need to make an informed decision. Effective communication on the front end is key to increasing the potential for a successful, long-term working relationship.

Convincing someone to take a job may have a short-term reward, but a better approach is to allow people to make a well-informed decision based on what they value.


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