Sometimes, it’s easier to attach an ROI to your Facebook cat photos than it is to properly identify the people who will help make your business a success.
You have to be able to reliably match what is important to you and the organization with what is important to the prospective employee.
For example, if your organization is one where the workday starts at four in the morning and runs until one in the afternoon, don’t hire people who want to socialize three or four nights a week or need to see their children off to school in the morning.
Too many people, particularly people who hire for small teams or small companies, rely on their gut instinct to identify the right candidate for a new position.
The routine often goes something like this. Go to Craigslist, put up a job description for the position, and wait for the resumes to roll in. You may wonder if half the people who send you a resume bother to read the job description. You get people from all walks of life responding to just about every kind of job these days.
You weed through the abundance of crap, conduct a handful of phone interviews, speak to a few people in person, and hire the “best” person.
If you are a good judge of human nature, run a multi-million-dollar empire, and are an experienced interviewer, this method has a small chance for success. Otherwise, do your homework.
In Full Engagement, Brian Tracy promotes The Law of Three in hiring:
Interview three candidates. Doing face-to-face interviews with at least three candidates gives you a good sense of who is available for the position.
Interview three times. It’s amazing what that will come out of people’s mouths the third time they meet with you. They start to feel more relaxed with your presence and confident in their position. This often leads them to reveal more about themselves than in previous meetings.
Meet in three different places. Changing venue often brings out different personality traits. Is the person subtly or even overtly rude to a waitress? Does she help a mother get her baby stroller through the door? When you blast a fart, does the candidate say “God Bless You?”
By changing the venue, you can uncover things that may not have been revealed in a conference room.
Have three different interviewers. It’s important to get different perspectives on a prospect, so include members of your existing team in the hiring process. When your team members speak with your prospects, you may unearth perspectives that you may not have touched on.
Making the wrong hiring decisions will infect your team and limit its ability to execute a plan. This is especially true with small groups, where a new hire makes up a much greater percentage of the whole. The costs associated with hiring the wrong people can be as bad as (or worse than) the benefits of hiring the right people.
If you make a bad hiring decision—it happens to everyone—remedy the situation quickly before it becomes a major disruption to your team.