Saturday, March 1, 2014

Interviewers: Getting the Right Person on the Bus.

Here are a few thoughts about hiring.  Having been on both sides of the hiring table over the last five years, I have gathered up the following:  

I think everyone would agree that the goal of interviewing people is to find the right person.  Any business owner will say that their people are key to their business.   Unfortunately, everyone is in too much of a hurry.  The interviewee wants to get to work quickly and the interviewer wants to get done with hiring so they can get back to work.    This fact, combined with the current structure of the human resources selection and interview process is NOT to find the right person, but to find the one person that can check the greatest number of boxes on the job description and that will work for the lowest salary. We use degrees, accreditations, licenses, certifications, and this intangible thing we call "experience" to try and find the right fit.  Is this really the best way?

Most hiring managers are not very good at getting great people and HR's only function is to pare down the list of applicants for the hiring manager.  Typically the hiring manager takes the list from HR and tries to figure out who to hire, but based on what?  Resume quality?  If the job includes resume writing, then this might be a good method.  Because hiring is not their strength, most hiring managers give up and simply hire the person suggested by someone in the company.  They figure that is safer than dealing with an unknown quantity.

Almost every task (outside of professional technical skills) can be trained.  Which would be better?  (1) To find a great person, invest a couple of weeks into training them on the specific systems you use, or (2) to find the person who knows your system, but is not a good fit for your organization.  Dumb question, easy answer.

What if there were a minimum of 3 interviews?

  1. Screening interview. (1 hour)  Sit down with HR and make sure you are not a wacko and that you have the skills and experience needed (on paper).  
  2. Technical/skills interview. (2 Hours) Demonstrate you are qualified to do the work.  
  3. Are you the right person? (4 Hours) Have the person write, create, collaborate, take a personality test.  Have them do strength finders 2.0.  Spend the time to really find out if they a a good fit for your team.   When they are done pay them $100 for their time.  
If appropriate, ask for a portfolio of past work.  Check their on-line presence.  What are they saying and what type of people are following them?  Remember people typically do what they are passionate about on the weekends.  That is also what they post about on social media.  

Maybe it is time we starting think out of the box when it comes to hiring. 

I would suggest everyone read this article called How to Get a Job at Google

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