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5 Ways to Mitigate Ghosting in Your Small Business

5 Ways to Mitigate Ghosting in Your Small Business

So, there you are, sitting in your office or at a café table waiting for a confirmed interviewee who ultimately never shows up. You’ve been ‘ghosted’ again by a candidate for your open position. If you aren’t sure what I’m referring to by “ghosted” please review my previous post on this topic. 

This has happened to me many times. I’ll have a confirmed interview with a candidate, and since I cover a large geographic area, I meet at a public café near the interviewee. This gets expensive when the candidate doesn’t show up. I’ve traveled, gave enough time to arrive a bit early, and waited. It just ends up being a lot of wasted time. When you are a small business owner, time is very valuable. 

I wanted to talk about ways that we as small business owners could mitigate the number of no shows (Ghosters) to our scheduled interviews. Notice I didn’t say eliminate Ghosters, but mitigate. I don’t think it’ll be possible to prevent this phenomenon from ever happening to you again but let's see what aspects of this situation are under our control.  

  1. Have an over the phone interview first. Ask the basic questions then schedule the in-person interview via the phone and not via email (don’t forget to still send a confirmation email). You’ve made a personal connection at this point, which might make it harder for the applicant to Ghost you. 

  2. Meet at your facility. That way if the candidate doesn’t show up, you’ve wasted little time and energy. In my case this isn’t usually possible. 

  3. Have potential candidates fill out your application for employment online or in person before reaching out for an interview. Most job placement websites like Indeed or Snag a Job allow for applicants to easily apply via their platform with an attached resume, however the applicant may not be truly interested in the job. Adding another step to the process will help weed out those who are not serious about the job. I can hear it now, “if you make it more difficult to apply then you will get less applicants”. I know, I know...but having fewer higher quality applicants is much better than having to sift through hundreds of applicants that aren’t really interested in working for you.  

  4. Track the name of the “Ghosters”. We’ve already been Ghosted twice by an applicant. We didn’t check to see if he had applied before, let alone if we had scheduled an interview with him. You’ll have to make a list and check it twice before scheduling in-person interviews. 🙂 

  5. If you can afford it, you could pay for an Applicant Tracking System (ATS). It’s a software that allows you to manage your applicants and to track those whom you are interested in and those whom have ghosted you. 


We are instituting some of these ideas in our business and it has helped. We’ve also created some voodoo dolls of applicants who have ghosted us....just kidding. In the end, there is no full proof way to protect yourself from Ghosters, but you can try and mitigate their effects on your professional life. 

Ghosting and Its Effect on Small Business

Ghosting and Its Effect on Small Business