Employers must smartly hire, manage and fire employees, but a good working relationship goes both ways. If a company hires talented, substantial people and treats them right, they should expect professionalism in return.

The work world has changed dramatically since my first job interview. In an economy with fewer great jobs, competing applicants should remember first impressions count and employers can easily investigate their pasts. Postings on social media like Facebook live on forever.

I consider a candidate’s actual skills as a key component, but personal attributes are equally critical. In fact, I would exchange less talent for more common sense and judgment.

American casinos and their hotels are expanding, renovating and under construction. Consolidated job fairs offer great opportunities for job seekers to secure offers over the next guy. Sadly, some people are unemployable and just plain clueless.

In Atlantic City, more than 3,000 attended the Showboat hotel’s recent job fair for 200 initial positions at all levels. The 852-room property reopens this month.

Untucked

Some eager candidates arrived hours early, but what interested me were front-page newspaper photos of how they came, not when. One showed a mid-20s woman in shorts, with gladiator sandals laced up her legs and hair in a pony tail. Others portrayed men with shirts hanging out of their pants, wearing baseball caps and sneakers.

Really? I don’t remember wearing shorts for a job interview. Some will excuse these applicants as lacking money for fancy clothing, but when did it cost anything to tuck in a shirt or wear pants? Skills can be taught…common sense can’t. There were reasons that 2,800 applicants were rejected. I suspect this scenario is being repeated elsewhere.

In an alarming job trend, more employees, especially Millenials, are now foregoing the traditional two-week notice and immediately leaving after resigning. Excluding a family crisis or illegal/abusive actions by a company and/or boss, it is a mistake and will eliminate a good recommendation. Smart employees should never burn bridges by blindsiding employers.

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That could ultimately happen to almost 1,000 striking Unite Here Local 54 Taj Mahal employees in Atlantic City. They walked out for the July 4th holiday weekend, the summer’s busiest. Four other casinos’ unions avoided a strike by negotiating a new contract.

United Here leaders rejected Taj management’s offer to partially restore health and pension benefits, calling it a “shadow” of their former package. Workers cite the Taj’s improving conditions as reason enough to compel billionaire owner Carl Icahn to restore 100 percent of their benefits.

Strike

During the last strike in 2004 when 10,000 workers at seven casinos walked out for 34 days, $60 million-plus was lost. Luckily, Atlantic City’s then mid-Atlantic monopoly meant customers tolerated the inconvenience and later returned to spend even more that year. That era is over forever since several mid-Atlantic and New England states with legalized gaming now compete against one another.

Strikers marching and chanting on the Boardwalk during the busiest weekend seems counterproductive to me. Management and non-striking workers have been pressed into service, but even this minimal disruption has sent Taj guests and visitors elsewhere to gamble, eat and drink.

Casinos work on time. Once lost, the money can rarely be recouped. Wouldn’t it have been smarter to take action at a slower time when employees could avoid also hurting themselves? Angry, unsympathetic customers may not return and some strikers have already reported losses of up to $700 in tips for the holiday weekend.

Icahn has invested over $150 million in the Tropicana, which he also owns, to turn it from bankruptcy to profitability. To save the Taj, Icahn spent over $86 million on the property. He wants to potentially invest millions more, but strikes kill motivation. Employees may get more than they bargained for if the property fails.

All are things to consider before waging a strike. Isn’t restoration of something, and working to jointly resolve issues, better than having no job in the long run?