Parents, park your helicopters say recruiters



For recruiters everywhere, helicopters are starting to report in — fast and furious. It’s the beginning of the hovering season. Parents are contacting recruiters to inquire about job possibilities for their new grads or for their kids’ summer. They want to learn more, clarify, instruct, and help.

At The Bagg Group, we understand well-intentioned parents. We started as a family firm 46 years ago, and we’re still an independent family firm – albeit we’re a much bigger family now, with five thriving divisions.

Still, we hold to kitchen table values. We’re all about being supportive, collaborative, going the extra mile for others – at work, as at home.   Plus, many of us are parents, and some of our kids might even call us over-protective. (We would disagree, of course.)

But speaking as recruitment experts, we urge parents to park their helicopters.  We’ve placed more than 60,000 people in full-time, contract and temporary jobs over the years so we have a pretty good idea of what hiring managers are looking for.

And no one is looking to hire mom or dad along with junior.  

If you’re 18- to 25-years-old, you’re part of a demographic that is known as Generation Next.  

Gen Next has its champions and its critics.

Some think of Gen Next as Generation C.

At The Bagg Group, we recognize there’s never been an up-and-coming group that is more about Conversation, Community and Connection. We applaud that you want your voices heard and that you support companies that care about causes.

Your detractors take another view. They point to cases of over-coddling, supervised by helicopter parents.Helicopter-Parents

If you think it doesn’t happen that Mom comes along to job try-outs to brag, check out these findings

— Almost 25% of 725 employers reported seeing parents ‘sometimes’ to ‘very often’ when hiring a college senior, according to one US study.

— 8% of recent university grads brought their parents along to an interview and 3% had their parents sit in on the meeting, reports another study cited in the Wall Street Journal.

Surprise: Your critics call you the Wuss Generation.  

It’s not fair, but it only takes a few pop-ins by parents to give today’s young job-hunters a reputation for being unable to stand without leaning on mom or dad.

As a job-hunter, the onus is on you to show you’re a worker, not a wimp.  And the minute a parent speaks for you, you’ve pretty much lost your case.

Here’s why bringing the folks can damage your reputation before you even earn one:

  • Recruiting and hiring mangers look for employees who they feel can handle responsibility and have initiative.
  • A hovering parent triggers the thought: “Did this young person ever learn to do things for themselves, by themselves?
  • Without even being consciously aware of it, the interviewer may see you as someone’s child, rather than as your own self.

At Bagg Pro, Bagg Technology Resources, Bagg @ Your Service, Bagg Managed Resources, and Turn Key Staffing, we know parents are terrific resources.  All of us recommend that family and friends ask their personal connections if their kids can get in touch directly should they have work opportunities.  That’s just good networking.

But when parents make a call for you to someone they don’t know, it can cost you a chance at a job.

In any event, we don’t buy that Gen Next doesn’t want to do things for themselves, or can’t.

Being in the business of helping high-achievers of all ages succeed, we know many young people would definitely agree with this famous quote by Einstein:

 “I am thankful to all of those who said ‘No’.  Because of them, I did it myself.”

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