Seven Steps to Hiring Right the First Time
By Gregg Gregory
job applicants make misrepresentations on their resume."
ever hired someone and found out the person you hired is the evil
twin of the person you interviewed? Have you ever hired someone and
subsequently had to fire that same person? If you have answered yes
to either of these you read on.
are just professional interviewers and can sell you a bag of goods
in the process. How can you avoid being taken by the new thief?
Studies reveal that as many as 30% of job applicants make
misrepresentations on their resume. In the October 2003 issue of HR
Magazine, ADP payroll and benefits company stated that in 2001 after
performing over 2.6 million background checks they found that 44% of
applicants lied about work history, 41% lied about education, and
23% falsified credentials or licenses.
If you have
fired the same person you personally hired answer the following
If you are
like the majority of the leaders in my workshops the answer to the
first question usually based around the resume, experience, skill
set and references etc. The usual answer around why they were fired
is also somewhat predictable. These answers include they stole from
the company, they could not do the work load (in other words they
lied in the interview or on the resume) they had a negative attitude
which resulted in and measured by poor behavior habits.
break it down this way; you hired the person for what they knew and
you fired the person for who they were. Stop and think about it for
a minute. We hire for what and fire for who. Let's turn that thought
process around and start hiring for who they are and not for what
they know or supposedly know.
several steps on how you can hire right the first time.
Always ask for
a cover letter. Even if you are accepting on line applications
ask for a cover letter. If they do not even include a cover
letter that means they cannot even follow the simplest of
directions. If they include a letter, look at the letter
closely. It can tell you a lot about the person. It can tell you
about their communication style, education etc. A reasonable
percentage of applicants will have their resume professionally
written but not necessarily the cover letter.
If you are
having applicants call in or fax in a resume be sure to set a
specific time-line window to do so. Again this is to see how
well they follow instructions. Someone who cannot follow simple
instructions will most likely not follow work instructions and
try to buck your system and cause disruptions on the team.
Set the first
interview for a phone interview. This can save you a bunch of
time and can tell you about their phone style as well. Be sure
to have several specific questions prepared for everyone you
call. These should be questions about work experience,
background, their personal objective as to why they want to work
with your organization etc. Be sure to note how well they
communicate and sell themselves (without being a canned speech)
over the phone. Be sure to take notes and compare them to the
responses you get when you bring them in for an interview.
Consistency is vital.
person in person should be nothing more than a continuance of
the telephone conversation. Now depending on the position they
are applying for you may want to schedule as many as four
interviews for the person in one morning or afternoon. This
shows you how serious the person is and if they are willing to
take off this much time to interview. It also opens up some
freedom for you. In using this approach you need to have one or
two identical questions scheduled to be asked by each person
during the process. Why? Actually there are two reasons.
1) Simply to see the level of consistency and I think that is
2) This one is to see if the become irritated at the
repetition of the same questions. If they notice and pose a
positive attitude towards the process that can be a very good
sign. On the other hand if they become agitated at the same
question three or four times then ask yourself the following
question. "Do I want this person on my team?"
In the meeting
you should also be asking questions that surround your corporate
core values, corporate vision and mission. If there is no match
here you most likely will not have a match on the team and
consequently you are asking for trouble down the line.
should be the type that evokes emotion in the applicant. The
deeper you dig the more you will find out about this person.
Questions here can include, "What is important about success to
you?" Most likely the answer will revolve around something
monetary or at least tangible. Now you want to explore a little
and ask them to expand on this. What you are doing is locating a
"feeling" response something not materialistic. Do not move on
until you have at least two feeling responses. Once this is
uncovered you can now ask why this is important to them. You may
find out that they believe in working together with a group of
people who have fun to achieve the team's mission. When asked
why fun is important, they unveil that fun creates energy and
energy gets the job done which in turn breeds more fun. Can you
work with this style of a person on your team? Better yet, is
this person a good fit for the rest of the team?
One thing you
always want to know is about their willingness to grow and
continually develop. A great closing thought is to learn about
the training they have had in the last 12 months. You should
also ask the last three non-fiction books they have read. If
they are not reading and attending workshops they most likely
have a small comfort zone. This translates to a large panic zone
where they get disturbed and become upset more easily.
organizations tell me that they just want a warm body in there. That
quite possibly could be the worst thing anyone could do. Putting the
wrong person on the team will destroy the team in the long haul and
the cost to revamp the team in a year or two is not worth putting
the wrong person on the team. Top organizations will tell you that
you are better off leaving the position open longer rather than
placing the wrong person on the team in the first place.
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