Take Off Your Blinders…

Sometimes I “just don’t get it.” What I’m talking about are candidates who refuse to accept the reality that their company could be contacting them any day to inform them that they have big plans – but they are no longer part of the team. They keep their head down, blinders on, eyes front and center and ears closed. Clueless. They don’t want to hear the facts. These candidates actually believe that if they stay the course despite all of the (many) signals (and sometimes written warnings) that somehow they will come out smelling like a rose once the dust settles.  They keep telling themselves that all is good. This, unfortunately, is a very bad plan.

These unique individuals have great skills and probably do add some level of value to their organization. However, they have been given (strong) advice to start looking and seek employment elsewhere but refuse to believe it’s “their problem.” They can’t accept the fact that it’s time to find a new pond to fish in. Yes – they have one foot on the boat and one foot on the island and can’t make the mental decision to leave. Perhaps they have decided to “homestead” their desk or cubicle area and refuse to leave.  That will not work. Instead, they want everything to stay the same. This, despite the fact that (many) others in the same organization all know the other shoe can and will drop any day. Friends and colleagues have pleaded with them to throw out a wide net and begin a search.  They are not interested.

Why you may ask?

While I’m not completely sure – I can only guess they are either in a complete state of denial or just have an inflated sense of self and could never imagine the company surviving without them. It could be that they just don’t see how they could be responsible for the situation. Maybe they rate themselves as an “A” Player when everyone else scores them in the “C” category. That’s a real disconnect. Whatever the reasons might be – it really doesn’t matter. It’s time to get in the game when the signals are so visibly clear. This is not a market where you can afford to have your head in the sand and risk being terminated if you have solid G-2 from those around you that your time is up. If termination risks are in the air the best advice I can give is to take off your blinders. Don’t take what is happening in your organization personally and spend cycles beating yourself up. This is not the time. If you have reached the end of the road it’s probably time to shove off. Make a move. Start networking and reaching out to those you can trust to see what opportunities might be out there. Don’t wait for someone to show up late one afternoon with an empty box and a security guard. Control your own destiny.

Here’s the really good news. The HCIT talent shortage is a real issue for companies in this space and if you decide to switch teams and you’re good – you won’t be on the sidelines very long.  Our business is going to do really well for many years to come. Begin your search now.

Just make sure your departure is on your timeline and not dictated by others. That would be bad. Yep. Very bad.

About the author


Tim Tolan

Tim Tolan is the Senior Partner of the Healthcare IT and Services Practice of Sanford Rose Associates. He has conducted searches for CEOs, presidents, senior vice presidents, vice presidents of business development, product development and sales. Tim is also the co-author of "The CEO’s Guide to Talent Acquisition – Finding Talent Your Competitors Overlook," available on Amazon.