In the past month, two situations have arisen in which “praising the Lord” stood in the way of a very good candidate and a very good company and a very good opportunity. They were both two separate situations. Most of us who are “aspiring” Christians know that people are going to judge our true beliefs by how we act and what we do more than by what we say. But in interviewing and hiring situation the encounters/interviews..on average about four hours…can be misconstrued or misunderstood.
In the first instance, a candidate had on the bottom of his signature line of his email a website address that took the reader to his personal blog. He is an excellent candidate. He has great technical skills and the ability to communicate those tactical skills in a sales environment which is substantiated by an excellent track record.
While he was interviewing at our client, he wrote a thank you email to the vice president of the small firm after he had interviewed. There are only about 100 people in his company and most of them are millennial’s. The admin to the VP received a copy of the thank you email and “followed” the link to the candidates personal blog. Unfortunately, the candidate’s personal blog, not only made it very clear that he was a devout Christian, but insisted that anyone that didn’t believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as their Savior was definitely going to burn in hell.
The admin to the VP sent the link to just about everybody she knew in the company, along with a comment asking them if they wanted to have someone in their midst that was going to “be a Bible beater and try to convert them to the following the Lord.”
There is absolutely no doubt that the candidates personal blog was almost insulting to people that didn’t feel earth think the same way he did. A number of people in the company went to the president of the firm, copies of the personal testimony of the candidate in hand and communicated in a very strong words that they did not under any circumstances, want someone in their organization who is going to try to convert everybody to Christianity.
After reading the blog, although it was strongly condemning people who didn’t feel the same way, it never communicated anything related to trying to convert anyone else. Now, it is relatively strong language when a person is absolutely certain that nonbelievers are going to burn in hell, but it doesn’t mean that that person is going to try to convert everyone.
The president of the company decided that he had enough problems and that he didn’t need to hire someone who might cause all kinds of controversy in the company. He just plain didn’t want to run that risk. So, he instructed the VP not to hire the candidate.
We suggested to the VP that he check the candidate’s previous employment references to see if he tried to “convert” people he had worked with before. We even went so far as to check with one of the candidate’s previous managers to find out that the candidate never tried to convert anybody to anything. The president, however, wouldn’t have anything to do with it. He had enough problems and wasn’t going to run any kind of risk. They are not going to hire the candidate, and that’s it!
The other instance was on the other side of the desk. At least our client company was open with our candidate they were interviewing that the whole company prayed every morning as part of their daily ritual. They warned the candidate that if she is not comfortable with that, she should consider going to work there. The candidate really liked the job and wanted to work there but was worried about, as she told us, “being forced to pray when I don’t believe in it.” She called one of the people at the company whom she had interviewed with to get an idea about the situation. Unfortunately, the person she spoke with was, as she said very confidentially, pretty cynical about the whole prayer idea, because she told our candidate that the company didn’t act the way they appeared to be. So, the candidate turned the job down.
The moral to all of this is that we are all struggling whether we are believers or not. In the first case, being judgmental, especially about people burning in hell is rather drastic and, if that’s all you know about someone, I can see why some of the employees of the client company were up in arms. In the second case, at least one person in the company didn’t feel like the organization was practicing what it preached.
The lesson in all of this is that people are going to recognize as more by our actions then they are by our words. There is no reason to run the risk of losing a good job opportunity because of a blog post. A private company certainly has a right to pray before every day but, as you can see it may not come across the right way to some people. And, maybe organizations like that don’t care.
But we all might be better off if we let how we treat people speak for our Convictions.