If words create worlds …

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What would be one piece of jargon that you’d like to strike from the language of recruitment? For me, it would have to be CANDIDATE OWNERSHIP.

It’s hard to find an expression that does greater damage to the reputation of recruitment as an emerging profession.

Of course, you all know that you can’t OWN a candidate. That sort of thing was abolished with slavery. So, at best, it’s a lazy expression that must clearly mean something else.

What you can OWN is the relational asset that consists of the goodwill connection that you enjoy with your candidates and clients.

You can also own the related intellectual property, contractual and legal rights that protect that goodwill.

But let me be clear. You cannot own a candidate. For as the courts have said, “No candidate is an asset on your balance sheet to be bought and sold”.

So, if it’s true that “words make worlds”, let’s make a world that is better because it uses language that reinforces and respects candidates’ value as people rather than as commodities.

Andrew C. Wood

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