Selecting the Right References Before Submitting an Application

Selecting referees for your reference list is a critical task in and of itself.

Gabriel Lucas

Sep 28, 2021

Selecting the Right References Before Submitting an Application

If you list too many people from the same organization and none from other organizations, an employer could infer that your other jobs were nearly as successful.  You also need to provide a balance of perspectives: (a) managers, (b) colleagues, and (c) subordinates.  Missing one or more of those vertical areas could lead a prospective employer to conclude that you’re (a) difficult to manage, (b) not collaborative with other departments, or (c) not a good manager.  Finally, always tailor your reference list for each application, just as you would a résumé.  A good leadership search never treats reference checking as a formality, and thus job seekers should invest a similar amount of time and thought into the process of selecting and listing referees.

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