6 Steps to hiring with confidence


One of the most common challenges we hear from business owners is successfully hiring good employees. One would think with the national unemployment rate still over 8%, the available talent pool would be well stocked with highly quality candidates eager to be the next superstar in your company. But the unfortunate reality is there are still a lot of people being hired that end up not being a good fit and often it means both the company and the employee end up back at square one.

The good news is there are a number of ways to improve this. Following are what I found to be the top six drivers to increase the chances of having a successful hire.

1) Job Description:

Have a clear description of the position you are seeking to fill. Make sure you clearly explain the role and what is expected. Be as specific as you can be and don’t sugarcoat things – if you need someone who can make hard decisions, say that.  Being upfront about this will right away will create a clear picture and  immediately narrow the audience.

2) Who to interview?

Create a list of minimum criteria that must be met to be considered for a formal interview. The list for this will vary with the position but it could include: Experience, Education, # of jobs, etc. Run their name through the search engines. What is the content of their social media pages? If someone doesn’t meet a criteria they simply are not eligible and move on.

3) Attitude:

Hire attitudes! I have always believed this to be paramount. There may be no other attribute more critical to the success of the hire than getting people in place with good positive attitudes. You can teach a lot of procedures, processes, and policies, but positive attitudes come from inside your candidate. Your business environment can only foster it.

4) Interview Process:

Interview multiple times, the higher the position the more you will interview. Clearly communicate the vision and mission statement of your company. Does the candidate align with it? Ask open ended questions and do a lot of listening. The only way you will learn if they truly align is by doing a lot of listening. Ask thought provoking questions, then shut up and listen. My favorite questions have always been ones that show how they handle adversity,  do they tend to show heart and character?

When you get a gut feeling there isn’t a match, trust your gut it is usually right. If there is a management or teams involved, get them involved in the process. Their conversations may uncover something previously missed.

5) Personality Profiles:

Have your potential hire (or at least your short list) complete a personality profile such as DISC. They are amazingly accurate in showing if the person’s personality is a good fit for the position you are seeking to fill.

6) References:

If you make it to this point with a green light, check references. Talk to as many people as you can; previous employers, co-workers, friends. At an absolute minimum, talk to 3. I know you’re busy, but this is the best way to really get a read outside of the interview.  Great questions for past employers are, “If you had the opportunity to hire “Mr. Smith” again would you hire him? If the answer is “Yes”, follow it with “Why?”. Listen to the answer closely, it will speak volumes.

At this point, if your potential new employee still looks like the perfect match there is a great chance you have found someone who is going to impact your team in a very positive way. Get them on board, give them the tools they need to succeed, and get out of their way!

Do you have a hiring process, when it’s time to hire? What have you found to be beneficial? Please share your thoughts in the space below.

Chris Steinlage   Kansas City Business Coach.

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