I made a mistake years ago when I placed a ‘Help Wanted” ad in the local newspaper.
At the time I didn’t give it much thought… I needed another person to fill a vacancy on my crew.
I had spoken with a friend earlier in the day who was also an area builder. He told me of the difficult time that he was having finding help in the improving economy and that a recent ad that he had placed resulted in no responses.
This was a problem that I had not considered and I grew concerned the more I thought about it.
I looked at the paper to see his offering and this is what I found… “Wanted: Carpenter’s helper, must have three years experience, have all necessary tools and a truck. All candidates must submit to regular drug testing. We offer health insurance, a 401 retirement package, and two weeks paid vacation per year. “
My ad was different…
“Apprenticeship opportunity… our firm specializes in the restoration and construction of antique log cabins, timber frames, barns, and stone homes.
We work in scenic locations often with mountain or river views.
We are looking for just the right person to join our team… perhaps you are the right one?
Experience and tools are a real plus, but what we are really seeking is someone with a lot of enthusiasm,… someone who sees this offering as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. We’d also like someone who has experienced some higher learning classes such as history, or art, or literature… to keep the jobsite conversations entertaining and enlightening.
We are just a small company so we don’t offer a lot of perks that the bigger firms can. But, we can offer you tremendous team camaraderie, work that you will enjoy going to every day, and, if you stay with us for a year or two, you will have the knowledge and skills to build a home of your own, from the foundation to the finish work.”
I called the ad in to the local newspaper and the young lady there offered me a special price if I ran the ad for a full week.
Five hours later I was back on the phone begging for her to retract the ad. At that point I had received over a hundred phone calls from people seeking the one position that I had available.
I even had several people offer to work for free.
And believe it or not, I had one person offer to pay me to work for me. Imagine that.
I had people with doctorate degrees. People that had traveled the world. Craftsmen who had worked at Colonial Williamsburg.
I ended up hiring the guy who showed up singing a Bob Dylan song… you can’t go wrong hiring someone that likes Dylan. lol
Originally posted 2015-04-20 16:16:42.