This might seem like a really odd topic for a post. I totally recognize it.
I presented at ACPA last year with two individuals that I feel lucky to consider colleagues. We did a presentation on authenticity. One of the questions presented to us during our presentation was, “How can you be authentic while hiring?” It was a fantastic question to be posed.
We can all recognize deficiencies at our respective institutions. If we can’t then we need to open our eyes a bit wider. They are there. But how do we communicate these to someone we are trying to hire? How accurately do we portray to them the realities of their potential situation? We want the best possible people in a position (at least I hope you feel that way), but do we trick them into thinking this job is rainbows and butterflies?
It is an odd position to be in. I want the best for my students. If I am going to leave, I want them to have someone following me who is even better than I am. At the same time, I want to make sure that the person understands the reality of what is happening. I don’t want to scare away amazing candidates, but at the same time I don’t want them to leave after a year because they felt lied to.
Authenticity in a job interview as the interviewer is a potential dual-edged sword. Damned if you do and damned if you don’t. How full of a picture do we actually provide? Do we keep things hidden? How honest are we with our “top candidates?” Does our “authenticity” translate to this process as much as it should?