Jim Collins’ best selling management book, Good to Great, teaches us that a primary goal of employee selection is to sit the right people in the right seat on the (company) bus. In other words, hire the right people and put them in the right position. While a typical recruiting effort takes great pains to measure the shape of the candidates’ derrieres, less attention is placed on designing the seat. It is the reason that you may have so much trouble choosing the right candidate and are often disappointed in the results.
The “shape of the seat” is the job that we expect our new employee to perform. Simple ways to construct the right seat:
Write a Job Description
This most basic of HR functions is often ignored. Nothing fancy here, just make a list of what the person in this job is expected to accomplish, and what qualifications, experiences and personality traits are ideal. Hold this in front of you when asking candidates questions. See if there is a match.
Consider giving a standard psychological assessment to all candidates, and then compare it with an ideal “job fit” profile that can be designed with input from senior management. I have been using the McQuaig System with good success; there are other well known psychological profiles on the market, such as Myers-Briggs.
Prepare Interview Questions In Advance
Create a list of 15-20 open ended questions to ask every candidate, along with pre-determined “acceptable answers” that closely match what you are looking for. This will focus your interviews and help check “interview drift”, where you realize after the candidate leaves that you had a great conversation but didn’t really get the information you needed to make a sound decision.
A job description, standard test and a set of interview questions will guarantee greater success in your interviewing and hiring process.
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