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The Fine Art of Recruiting, Relatives, and Hiring Ethics

by | Mar 25, 2016 | Top Echelon Blog

Hiring ethics can often be a touchy subject. It can also be a subjective subject . . . depending upon who you ask. Although there are hard and fast rules for hiring, theory does not always mirror practice, and that is the theme of our next crazy recruiting story!

Once again, this is a story that was submitted by a Top Echelon Network recruiter. Once again, it involves an interview, but this time, the reason that the candidate was not hired had nothing to do with the candidate. It had everything to do with the hiring manager.

So without further adieu, here is this week’s “Top Echelon Crazy Recruiting Story” . . .

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“I had a client who was seeking a national sales manager.  They are a timer manufacturer.  The vice president of the company said he wants someone who:

  • had 10 years of sales management experience
  • had knowledge of time clock distribution channels
  • was married
  • was in his 30s
  • had children
  • was Italian

I told him that I could only use the first two criteria and that was ALL I would use.

So, I conducted the search and found that the national sales manager of their main competitor was available.  He was also 32 years old, married with two children, local, and Italian!

I present the candidate.  Phone interview is great. He goes a face to face interview.  Comes out saying it went great.  I call the VP thinking we’re about to close, and he tells me, “John was fantastic, and you did a great job.  It’s too bad we can’t hire him.”

Stupefied, I said “WHY NOT?”

He said, “During the conversations we realized that we’re cousins.  I can’t hire him because he’s a relative.  That would be nepotism.  It’s unethical.”

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Remember, there are two ways you can submit your craziest recruiting story (that may or may not involve hiring ethics):

  • You can email your story to
  • You can add the story in the comments section at the end of this blog post.

Keep in mind that you can remain anonymous if you would like, and by submitting your story, you give us permission to include the story in a future blog or social media post. And be sure to check back with the Top Echelon Blog.

Because more crazy recruiting stories are on the way!

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