We’ve all done it. Made a hire.
The candidate impressed us in the interview process. They seemed to be a great fit on all levels – technical skills, job experience, cultural fit. They were even referred to us by someone we know and trust.
A few weeks in, it becomes clear that they aren’t a fit for your company culture.
The good technical experience…has turned into an arrogant, ‘know it all’ employee who thinks they are always right. The job experience that they had in the past wasn’t completely ‘legit’…and they need a lot of support and training. The reference that was made by someone we know and trust was just a ‘favor’ they were doing for the person.
The reasons can be any of the above or more.
But….you’ve made a bad hire and now you have to do something about it.
Preventing a Bad Hire
We can all be fooled at times. I know I have. I’ve had to terminate a few people in the past….and it’s no fun.
How can you prevent bad hires? I’m glad you asked.
Here are a few guidelines:
1. Take Your Time
We’ve always got a reason to be in a hurry. The position is vacant. Someone has to do
double duty. We’ve got the funding resources now, but maybe not later. There’s always a reason to hurry.
But – research shows ‘slower’ hiring yields quality, longer term employees
(The Ramsey Corporation in Nashville
some good info on this).
2. Get to Know Them
When I say ‘get to know them’….I don’t mean in one interview. Have them interview with several people.
Get to know them in some different settings.
How they treat the waitress at a restaurant might tell you more about their character than how they answer interview questions.
3. References, References, References
I suggest to potential employers that they give you at least 10 references. That’s right TEN.
Am I a bit extreme? Maybe.
But…if they’ve had any length of time in their career, they should know at least 10 people that can speak about their work ethic, team support, and/or knowledge and skills.
4. Get to Know Their Strengths AND their Limitations
If they tell you they don’t have limitations or weaknesses, then that’s a problem. And I don’t mean something like ‘I work too hard!’ or ‘I have too high of expectations on myself!’. These are fake (and total BS in my opinion).
Everyone has something that they aren’t as good at.
For me, it’s staying organized. I’m honest about this with potential clients/employers.
But…I also tell them how I’m working to improve that area of my life….and give them specific examples of how far I’ve come in this area.
5. Yes, have them take a couple of assessments
There’s a ton of assessments out there. I really enjoy the ones on ‘Cloverleaf’.
By the way – I can give you a free trial of Cloverleaf for you and/or your organization if you want to ‘kick the tires’ on it.
There are plenty of good assessments out there. Choose a couple and go with it and see what you can learn about potential employees.
Stay after it…
No one hires flawlessly.
But…you can get better at it..
Stay after it and commit to improving – you’ll continue to get better and better and making good hires…and minimizing bad hires.