The Aftermath of a “No Show”- He Just Checked Out!

timtolan Tim Tolan


Painful. Simply painful…

It is the only way to describe the worst possible conclusion of an accepted offer – the “no-show“. RunawayWebster’s has a different way to describe this phenomenon and it goes something like this…

No–show (Pronunciation: nō-shō)

Function: noun 1: a person who reserves space (as on an airplane) but neither uses nor cancels the reservation 2: a person who buys a ticket but does not attend ; broadly: a person who is expected but who does not show up 3: failure to show up…

You work hard to profile, source, screen, interview and present the best possible talent you can find to fill a critical position opening… You then go on to negotiate all of the details of the offer to make sure both parties wind up with a true “win-win” scenario. Then, all of a sudden, the candidate decides to opt out. WHAT???

Some candidates really do have legitimate reasons, while others (most) just get cold feet, and instead of pushing ahead and making positive changes to improve their income, grow their career, adopt a new and exciting culture and improve their position/title – they revert back to their comfort zone. I don’t get it. No guts – no glory. The client, while they may understand the situation, ultimately is greatly impacted by a no-show – not to mention the search firm.

Yes, yes – back-up candidates are generally waiting in the wings. However, the challenge is that once the high bar is set with the candidate that receives the offer (and then checks out in the end), the client has an expectation that the perfect candidate needs to look like the guy that just bailed.


More often than not, there is a solution to the challenges we face with a no show – we can quickly move to candidates we have waiting in the wings, etc. It’s not something we deal with that often – but it does happen. Many times its for reasons well beyond our control.

Can you tell that I just experienced a no show? Didn’t think so…   🙁