I was recently asked to coach a team of managers to make better hiring decisions. This group was fairly new to management and the company was growing fast. Here are some suggestions I gave…
- Hiring managers need to thoroughly understand what they are looking for. This doesn’t stop at the list of ‘technical’ skills required to do the job. This also means taking a look at the entire team to see what type of person will complement them. For example, if everyone is analytical and loves to study data, perhaps it would be beneficial to add someone to the team who likes to take action. This can be a nice balance on the team between analysis and action.
- Take a good look at the culture of the team and the organization by asking these questions: What are the norms, and unspoken ‘rules’ about how to do business? Who are the people who are thriving in the environment? What are some of the behaviors and traits of those people which make them successful? Now, with a good grasp of the type of person who be a successful addition, describe the non-technical aspect of the person you’d like to hire.
- Write good questions that don’t allow the interviewee to get away with giving responses to questions that they think you want to hear. Use questions that will address situations that come up in your workplace to see how they have handled them in the past, not how they would theoretically handle them. Them, sit back and listen. Give the candidate plenty of time to come up with relevant examples.
In summary, align your questions with the culture and goals of the team and the organization. This will increase your success rate of hiring people who are good fit and are more likely to stay with the company longer.