How to be a SuperSTAR Leader: Hiring the Best People

 In Business Success, Leadership Development

Your success as a manager is often linked to how well you recruit and hire. Unfortunately, not all supervisors or managers have complete control over the selection process, or aren’t involved in the hiring effort. At times, corporate or human resources policies seem to make it difficult to hire the best candidates. Specific and stringent policies are in place to keep the selection process fair and legal. Other times, the best talent doesn’t seem interested in your job because they like their current job, the compensation isn’t attractive enough or the reputation of your company is questionable.

Regardless of the above, the selection process is a crucial element of a high-performance strategy. Managers need to understand good selection practices since the best managers tend to have the best people. A successful working relationship with employees includes a combination of good selection practices and strong employee development. Unfortunately, many managers use poor, outdated, inadvertently illegal, and sometimes harmful hiring methods that put their companies at great risk.

Turnover is a pain, and if you are constantly interviewing and then training new employees, you will regularly lose ground. The wrong hire can cost three times the annual salary. High turnover costs can negatively impact your department, the company and your reputation. Other employees wonder, what’s wrong with this place? High turnover rates suggest that management has poor hiring habits and poor leadership practices. All of this leads to lost opportunities for better service, sales, quality, or profit.

The selection process needs to be like a test to be fair. Most efforts at hiring and interviewing reflect some opportunity for legal action because of:

  • Poor Preparation
  • Interview Questions Unrelated To The Job
  • Failure To Structure The Process To Give Reliable Information

Base the Interview On A Structured Business Like Process

The law considers the interview like a test. A good test is reliable and valid. To be reliable, it must generate consistent information for decision-making no matter who does the interview or who you are interviewing. Structure helps with this and should include: using a legal application for everyone, having written job descriptions, creating written and clear expectations and goals, and establishing questions about the meaningful job tasks and duties. Shooting from the hip and relying on a gut feeling most likely will produce unreliable information and poor results, maybe even legal concerns.

To be valid, the selection process and specifically the interviews, must effectively measure applicant skills and compatibility for the job. In other words, does the interview generate information that is a good prediction for job performance and success? This can be difficult to do. Even the best selection process could be challenged legally.

It is very important for an interviewer to try to conduct a reliable and valid interview. Initially, it is critical that the interviewer establish a positive climate and rapport with the candidate. The interviewer must ask specific and job related questions. Also, ensure that consistent questions are asked of each candidate. An interviewer also needs to clearly communicate a sense of fairness and realistic understanding of the requirements and skills needed for a specific job to the applicant. Then and only then will the interview process be professional and fair, helping the manager hire the best people.

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Rick Conlow
Rick Conlow is the CEO & Founder of Rick Conlow International, a consulting, training and coaching firm. He has helped over 200 companies such as Target, Costco, Andersen Windows, Spectrum, Northern Power, Meijer, Carpet King, International Truck, John Deere, Lowes Financial, and Canadian Linen improve customer loyalty, increase sales and add profits. Rick has been a general manager, vice president, training director, program director, and national sales trainer. He has authored 22 books, and regularly speaks at conferences and to audiences of all sizes.
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