If you haven't heard about this already (although there's a very slight chance you have not as it has been all over the news), there has been a huge blunder surrounding the 89th Oscar Academy Awards Ceremony. If you still don't know what we are talking about, here's a quick recap. The presenters mistakenly revealed the 'Best Picture' award winner as being 'La La Land' – which a few moments later appeared to be completely wrong – just after the cast finished their speeches, to the shock and dismay of everyone. Moonlight was the actual winner of this category, who was subsequently handed over the award.

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Credit to: Christian Abad Films https://vimeo.com/88505465

If you have been wondering what is it that recruiters can learn from this embarrassing, yet avoidable situation, here it is.. I am sure we have all been in a situation where through our own fault, or maybe through the actions of another we have delivered incorrect information to someone, or even worse to the WRONG person!

How can you rectify a 'blunder' you may have committed without making the whole situation worse?

Maybe it happened to you as well to have some really good feedback from a client on a candidate, and got a bit ahead of yourself and spoken with the candidate and convinced them they will get an offer for the role they have been interviewed for! Later on, you then heard back from the client and were told 'We have decided to go with another candidate we have interviewed, they have more relevant experience and possess more of the skills we are looking for'. Woops! What now? Your candidate has been thinking they have an offer coming their way, how do you manage this whole situation?

First of all you should get in contact with the candidate and apologise for misleading them and the misunderstanding. Explain that you were given promising and excellent feedback and the client was singing their praises which (prematurely) led you to believe an offer was coming their way. Do not try to blame other people for your mistake, take responsibility admit to having misunderstood the client's directive as regards to the following steps in the recruitment process, i.e. you misinterpreted the client feedback and how you relayed it. You should then reassure the candidate that you are actively looking to find them their dream job and that you will only discuss an offer once you have been given a definite confirmation from the client.

Always give honest feedback to candidates once they have been to an interview but trying not to get ahead of yourself as this can lead to a misunderstanding that could leave everyone involved red-faced! As we saw during the Oscars, miscommunication can happen, but lessons can be learnt in how these 'blunders' are handled and rectified.


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