Semantics, Monikers and Confusion… Just Sell the Freaking Popsicles, People!!!

Maren Hogan Candidate Pool, Leadership, Maren Hogan

As in LOTS of other fields, title inflation and semantics reign in HR. Actually, there are some (and you know who you are) that would rail against a recruiting firm even attempting to bandy the term HR about, but I digress. Talent Management, Human Capital, Recruiting, Headhunting, Employee Relations, Onboarding. And on and on we go. Our spellcheckers can’t even keep up with all the new words we come up with to explain what we do and how we do it. So what’s in a name?

RANDOM THOUGHT ALERT: Take Candidate Pool vs. Talent Pipeline. Now, pools are fun to be in and IStereotype_lg  love splashing around with the best of them, but once you’re in a pool, you don’t really go anywhere. I doubt 25-year old Brendan cares much so long as he gets a good job, but you see my point. Overthinkers abound. Me? I like Talent Pipeline, mostly because it conveys movement. Pool seems languid and laissez faire. Plus, I think our entire industry has pounced on “talent” like the word of the century. Never since the parable in the New Testament has the word gotten such use!

I have sounded off about this before. Something deep down (near the part that almost majored in Psych) makes me feel that with the constant inflation of titles, brandings and job descriptions, we have cheapened what we do. As has been mentioned on this and other fantastic blogs, there is an element of sales and marketing to what we do. The words we use must be paid attention to. Look what happened to Jason Davis (aka Slouch) after a breakdown in communication– scroll to the bottom of this link, it gets good, like a fight between all the popular kids at school.

Lawyers (oh am I going to get letters about this one) don’t call themselves “judiciary specialists”. Ice Cream Truck Drivers don’t brand themselves “frozen treat experts”.

They just win the darn cases and sell the freakin’ creamsicles.