After watching couples for only 15 minutes, a seasoned marriage counsellor accurately predicts 90% of the time whether they’ll still be together in 5 years. An ancient sculpture is acquired by a museum. It appears authentic, but art experts experience a ‘gut feeling’ that something is wrong. Its authenticity is later thrown into question. This ‘gut feeling’ is Thin Slicing, the ability to see patterns in events based on only ‘thin slices’ of experience or observation.
In Malcolm Gladwell’s book Blink he explores intuition and its origins. His thesis, in part, is that intuition actually comes from a wealth of experiences stored in the subconscious brain. When greeted with a scenario that is similar to these experiences, a hunch is produced that helps guide decision making. Some of us ‘trust our gut’ and others don’t. The question is – should we, especially if we only hire two or three times a year?
Employers and Thin Slicing
Do we dismiss a candidate’s resume, or mentally place them in the unsuitable pile during an interview if our gut tells us to? It depends. Consider that most of our judgements are based on the first few seconds of meeting someone (or reading their resume). It follows then that we need to have a wealth of experience to draw on to ensure that our thin slicing isn’t simply rooted in bias or mistaken assumptions. Knowing this, we might ask ourselves:
Candidates and Thin Slicing
You’re creating your LinkedIn profile, trying to build a great resume and pondering how to answer the infamous “Tell me a little bit about yourself.” You’re feeling overwhelmed. How do you order your most sellable points for full effect? Heck, what is most marketable about you in the first place? When considering thin slicing, here’s how to make sure employers get the right message about you:
The expression ‘trust your gut’ is part of our everyday experience. The question is, how can we use it to our advantage during the hiring process, or to help us land the job we want? How deeply does our expertise go and when do we need to call in outside reinforcements to make sure our bias isn’t guiding our decision making? Thin slicing exists. It has an impact. Make sure you know how to use it to accomplish your end goal – a great hire or securing the role you want.
Want to read more about thin slicing? Check out what Wikipedia has to say.
Your Next Step
No one should walk the job search or hiring road alone. At Clarity Recruitment we help others realize their success through a process that marries proprietary technology with unwavering commitment. Contact us today to take control of your career, or to partner with us to hire well.
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