Hiring Right in 4 Easy StepsMay 18, 2022
Impossible, you say! Hiring is never easy and can be incredibly draining. True, if you do what most people do. Post an ad, hope people respond, if you are lucky wade through huge stacks of resumes, find a few you can call, bring some in for interviews, choose what might be a good fit and hope for the best.
This is a tough employment marketplace. So much uncertainty. Seemingly few qualified candidates. Truly a difficult effort right now.
But what if you could attract more good talent faster? Step outside of your normal hiring pattern for a minute. Think of a different way of hiring.
Step 1: Specific Selection Criteria
Most people say to me they have great clarity on what they are looking for in candidates. When I ask them to tell me, they hand me a job description. When I talk about a Selection Criteria, I am not talking about the job responsibilities or hard skills they need to have. Here is the question I ask, "if the perfect candidate was sitting across the table from you, what would they look like. This is specific to what they bring with them:
- Years of experience
- Type of experience
- Specific accomplishments
- Community involvement
- Personal values
- Networks and contacts
- Training they have had
- Projects they have successfully completed and what they actually did
- Experience with different teams
These are a few specifics that make up a Selection Criteria. Then when these have been determined, rate how important they are on a scale from 1-10. You can have multiple 10's, 9's, 8's...but be realistic, everything can't be top priority or nothing is a priority. What is truly most important?
Step 2: Opportunity Announcement
Instead of writing the same old job posting, flip the script! Write the opportunity announcement as if you were the candidate. What would you like to see that would interest you. Especially in today's world, people are looking for more than just a job, they want a place to belong, to grow, to achieve, to be a part of something bigger than themselves. Here is an example:
If you (list the most important items in the Selection Criteria in the bullet points below):
- Have successfully managed projects to completion for 3+ years
- Are competent in [specific skills and software]
- Have a documented track record of completing projects on time and within specifications
- Have 5+ years working in a project team environment
Then this may be the ideal opportunity for you!
Are you someone who: enjoys managing projects, is good at collaborating with a team of people who work closely together, likes to connect with customers, wants to be empowered to make decisions, invests in their own growth and development...then we want to talk to you!
We are a strong family values organization who invests in the growth and development of our people.
The opportunity announcement acts as an invitation but also as qualification. We want to attract good talent and open the door for them to walk through.
Step 3: Assessments
Assessments, when used correctly and with a certified assessment professional, provide insight you cannot get in other ways. A few specific considerations regarding pre-employment assessments:
- Ensure that you are following the employment law and regulations for your geographic area
- NEVER use just one assessment or base an employment decision on assessment data alone
The benefits of using pre-employment assessments are huge:
- Better match to role and responsibility
- Enhance the ability to predict success
- Provide directed questions for the interview process
- Key differentiation between candidates with similar experience and skills
- Create candidate specific plan for training and adding to the team when hired
Step 4: Behavioral or Situational Questions
The goal of interviews is to gain deeper insight into the candidate and what they bring with them. Many standard interview questions provide minimal insight. Instead of focusing on what not to ask, I want to focus on what types of questions will provide deeper insight:
- Tell me about a project that derailed. (pause for answer) What did you do then? (pause for answer) What did you learn from that situation?
- What bothers you in the workplace? (pause for answer) How do you deal with that?
- You are handed a new project. Please describe your approach to starting, managing, and completing the project.
- You are working on a project and one person consistently causes delays. How would you deal with this?
These are the types of questions that will give you greater insight. How someone thinks, how they manage projects, how they deal with conflict, how they like to work.
There is another type of question I like to use when I am doing searches for our clients. It is really more of a mini project. I call it the "challenge project". Example: If you are hiring a salesperson, ask them to present in the next interview their 90 day plan and explain how that will help them get a fast start.
Hiring right can be easier if the right practices and processes are put in place. This is what we call a liberating structure. Structures that free up time, energy, and focus for other valuable efforts. Let's face it...hiring can be a massive undertaking. The easier and more effective we can make it, the better the outcomes, and the more enjoyable life is!
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