Tag Archives: Recruiter

14 point sanity check for detecting Psycho Babble at work

Psycho (Imelda May song)

If it wasn’t so funny it would be serious, very serious. The bearers of bad behavior are alive and well strutting their stuff day in, day out…in a mixture of disguises. They know when to turn it on and off, almost to perfection, as they trance around the workplace manipulating in subversive behavior  Their goal…control, authority and power at your expense. So how can this be and why do they get away with it?

 “The number one aim of a corporate psycho is to protect themselves.”

To understand the answer to this question there must be an acceptance that such people really exist and survive in organisations through a web of complex partnerships and cultures that have developed over time. That’s right, they don’t play alone! There is a support network that may not encourage their bad behaviour, but are aware of it, and how it impacts on the morale of employees. In just about every company I have worked in as a human resources professional, I have encountered this kind of subversion culture in some form or another. In some workplaces psycho babble can be described as;

  1. Protected species
  2. Anointed ones
  3. Untouchables
  4. Dragons
  5. Clicks
  6. Political animals

It’s not easy determining if one of your colleagues is engaged in psycho babble. The 14 point checklist below may assist in early detection. However, this is just a snapshot and more detailed assessment is required.

  • Superficial charm
  • Grandiose sense of self-worth
  • Need for stimulation and prone to boredom
  • Pathological lying
  • Conning and manipulative behaviour
  • Lack of remorse or guilt
  • Shallow emotional effect
  • Callous lack of empathy for others
  • Parasitic lifestyle and taking credit for other people’s work
  • Poor behavioural control
  • Promiscuous sexual behaviour
  • Lack of realistic, long-term goals
  • Inability to take responsibility
  • General irresponsibility

The 5 Emotional cancerous behaviours of fragmented people are:

  1. Criticizing
  2. Complaining
  3. Comparing
  4. Competing
  5. Contending 

It not easy trying to deal with a corporate psycho because they may have the favour of their boss and their wrong doings are filtered. My only advice is that eventually they will unravel themselves and expose their rear guard. So sit back and watch them implode into a frenzy of all sorts.

Perhaps you want to take the quiz…this is a screening measure to help you determine whether you might have been a victim of workplace psycho babble. Answer the following questions based upon the your boss’s behavior during the past 6 months and good luck!



3 sure ways to ensure your resume packs a punch…


It’s Sunday morning and your having coffee, just relaxing in the courtyard of your home The suns rays filtering through trees perfectly to create a feeling of warmth. It’s a great day to read the newspaper and catch up on some interesting articles. Your flickering through the pages and a headline captures your attention. A journalist you have never heard of seen before has written a punch line that captures your interest. He goes onto express a point of view by providing support information to demonstrate how they came to that conclusion. You read on…your inquisitive…and want to know more. Where is this story heading?

Does your resume have that striking punchline that engages the recruiter? Does it tell a story about you that engages the recruiter to find out more. Has it been able to profile you in a manner that projects you as a top candidate with a point of differentiation?

Here are 3 key points that will distinguish your resume from the rest and encourage the recruiter to explore further;

  1. Is your document solutions orientated and does it project you as someone who can find solutions to business problems?
  2. Is your document objectives orientated and can it demonstrate your achievements by referring to SMART objectives as evidence?
  3. Does it demonstrated the how in your ability to achieve success through the engagement of others.

Does your resume contain specific examples (what) where you have found solutions to business problems. Companies today want more that just your ability to perform a task but to participate in methodologies that drive root cause analysis and eliminate poor work practices. Removing non value added activity saves companies money and your resume should clearly state where you have done this.

Does your resume clearly show objectives you have set and achieved. They should be SMART objectives (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time bound).

The killer blow comes when you project the (how) you achieved your objectives. Teamwork, working in teams, cross functional teams, engagement, coaching and mentoring others to success. Because achievements are rarely achieved on your own accord but through a team work based culture. So your resume should demonstrate your ability to be part of a team and drive improvements by motivating and utilising the skills of others.

Have it look at your resume and ask yourself…does it pack a punch? Does it have point of difference about your ability to perform the role? Would you hire that person and does it get you motivated to pick up that phone and arrange an interview.

When you consider your resume is an entry point to the interview stage and must perform at an optimum level to get to the top of the pile…is it cutting the mustard? We all think we can draft our own resumes and some are better than others. However, a professionally written document will  focus on your projection and profile and pack a punch in the right areas. Its money well spent if your serious about you next move.

What is the most powerful letter often neglected by job hunters?

You have applied for a job and it’s getting close…the field is competitive and not much is separating the applicants. Its going to come down to relationship building and demonstrating your point of difference. You want to give that little bit extra in terms of profile and projection so you can stand out. So what is it you can do that will count?

The follow-up letter is a powerful tool often ignored by applicants during job search. Written effectively, it can add weight to your application, particularly when a short list for second or third interviews is being determined by the recruiter. The follow-up letter has 5 key uses: 

  1. A method for continued dialogue between yourself and the recruiter
  2. An opportunity to restate your skills and experience
  3. Evidence that you have considered the position seriously and wish to reaffirm your interest
  4. It’s a proactive document, providing a vehicle for selling yourself further
  5. The ability to offer solutions to key issues and objectives discussed during the interview.

The structure for your follow-up letter is similar to your covering letter with some minor variation as follows; 

  • Commence your letter with a thank you statement in appreciation of the recruiter’s time
  • Include references to key selection criteria discussed during the interview in bullet-point form. This will confirm you have paid attention to the recruiter’s comments
  • Be proactive by offering solutions to key issues and objectives discussed during the interview
  • Reaffirm that you are still interested and challenged by the position. It will reflect your enthusiasm.

Here are 5 follow-up letter tips; 

  1. Write your letter on the same day after the interview
  2. Send your follow-up letter on the same day of the interview. It’s important that your letter gets to the recruiter as quickly as possible
  3. e-mail is an ideal method of correspondence
  4. Do not courier your letter, as it may appear exaggerated
  5. Write a follow-up letter after each interview stage and not just the first.

The benefit of the follow-up letter is that it’s not commonly used as a technique by job applicants, and by applying this powerful tool, you will certainly have an edge on other applicants.