One of the first steps in building a culture of engagement is to hire the right person and keep hiring the right people, over and over and over again.
Rarely mentioned in this obviously key step is the process.
When will you know it’s time to hire another person? Many readers will roll their eyes and say:
Well, it’s obvious. Because...[X or Y] where X and Y is their favorite reason or metric.
How do you find the right people to interview? Some readers might say:
Put an ad in the paper or LinkedIn. Look at the unemployment rate.
What questions do we ask these candidates? A few readers might turn to trick questions. Google’s famous or infamous for its trick questions. A few may have HR departments skilled in traditional interview techniques.
How do you prepare for their arrival?
We’ll figure it out, maybe give ‘em Jimmie’s desk in the closet!Jimmie shouts Yeah, buddy!
But, too many companies take this approach and the collective result is that the starry-eyed A-Player joins the 70% of their colleagues, disengaged, eyes glazed over, zombies repeating tasks and answers in a monotone voice.
Let’s revisit those questions with an eye towards recognizing and including your in-house hiring experts: your employees.
When will you know it’s time to hire another person?
Listen to your employees. Better yet, ask them the question explicitly.
How do you find the right people to interview?
See above. They are motivated to find the right person to hire, quickly. That new hire will have a significant and direct impact on the quality of their day.
Worried about them hiring their friend? Don’t be. Indicator Number 10 on Gallup’s Q12 survey of employee engagement levels is this:
I have a best friend at work? T/F
Based on the average employee engagement figures for US companies, I'd guess that only 30% or less of US employees would answer yes. That's what friendship is about: not recruiting your best friend to be a zombie, like you.
What questions should you ask?
Everyone has blind spots. One good way to look around our own blind corners is to ask others what they see. The current way, excluding employees, is like driving around our own blind corners in the night with no headlights and ask for a raise if we don’t hit someone.
Is this expensive, time-consuming?
Compared to what?
Dr. Brad Smart author of Topgrading: How Leading Companies Win by Hiring, Keeping and Coaching the Best Players and The Smart Interviewer: Tools and Techniques for Hiring the Best reports that...
Based on our studies, the average cost of a mis-hire can be six times the base salary for a sales rep, 15 times base salary for a manager, and as much as 27 times base salary for an executive.
Is that more expensive, more time-consuming, than asking your in-house recruiters to spend four to five hours to assess someone they will be expected to train, support and mentor while also doing their own jobs?
The key word after employee is engage. I didn’t say relinquish authority or ignore budgets.
Criteria need to be set and communicated. Decisions need to be made. Personnel need accountability.
However, in this process, where you engage their talents and insights and motivations in finding the best person to help reach their goals those topics will be addressed.
Two Excellent Resources:
These are two resources I used with 100% success - hiring 3 great people while not hiring a great person but one who was not a good cultural fit.
Of these two, I prefer The Smart Interviewer. It outlines the very extensive, very useful, CIDS or Chronological In-Depth Structured interview. I've used it successfully four times: 3 great hires and 1 bad hire avoided.
WARNING: Shameless Self-Promotion
My book, The Engaged Hiring Process: A Simple Plan to Help You Hire the Best, offers a more complete plan to not only hire the best but engage your employees in that process. The result is you welcome your newest A-Player into your culture of rapidly growing levels of engagement.