One of the things I really enjoyed about being a recruiter were those moments when I would call a candidate to tell them that we had an offer.
There would always be a slight pause as the news sank in, then a moment of sheer excitement, closely followed by gratitude … and quite often (not always!) a few days later the arrival of a card, bottle of wine, box of chocolates, or some token of their appreciation.
Sometimes I really miss those days!
Whilst in my business today we are still finding amazing talent for organisations all over the world, I am not the one actually making the call to a candidate to let them know they have an offer, and this means that I no longer hear the initial excitement in their voice.
When a friend of mine from Australia called me on Skype the other day to let me know that she’d been offered a new job, I was really happy for her.
Not only did I know that Betty was more than capable of taking on the challenges that came with the new position, but she really deserved the new role. She’d been strung along way too long in her old company and had been the victim of a typical case of “over promise and never deliver“.
While we were chatting I asked Betty when she was actually starting her new role.
“Tomorrow morning“, she said.
I was surprised. Although I’m over on the other side of the world, I realised that she was starting her new job on a Thursday.
“Who does that?” I thought to myself. And I wasn’t just thinking about it from the new employee’s perspective. I was also thinking about it from the perspective of the new employer. Why bring someone in for 2 days and then head into the weekend? Surely they wouldn’t remember everything you went over with them on the following Monday?
Betty must have seen the look of surprise on my face (even on Skype!), since she said “Thursday’s the best day to start a new job“.
Again I thought back to when I was a manager and I started thinking about pay cycles, partial weeks, leave accrual, induction programs, and I wondered where the logic was in bringing somebody new in on a Thursday.
But this wasn’t about bringing somebody new into a business. As it turned out Betty had specifically asked to start her new role on a Thursday.
“Think of it like this“, Betty said. “When you start a new job on a Monday, everyone’s grumpy. They’ve just come back in after a weekend. More often than not there are weekly kick off meetings taking place that you’d have absolutely no idea about if you had to sit in. People all around you will be suffering from some level of Monday-itis, and basically by the time you get through a full 5 days your brain is fried and you’ve suffered information overload“.
“But if you can start on a Thursday“, she continued … “people are far more relaxed. They will be more receptive to spending time with you, all the early and mid-week crises are over, and people are actually feeling good about the upcoming weekend. They’ll welcome you far more enthusiastically. Then you can have a weekend and really start afresh the following week. I know which option I would rather take.”
Maybe Betty was on to something.
Has Thursday become the new Monday when it comes to starting a new job?