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Executive Search Firm News - Avoiding Hiring Mistakes

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The RSI Executive Search Firm News Article Series, "Management Matters" is focused on Employer & Management topics that help maximize their leadership skills and techniques.

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Management Matters - Avoiding Hiring Mistakes

Management Matters: is a New Article series dealing with the issues that arise when managing personnel and how to optimize your current staff in a company.

Avoiding Hiring Mistakes
September 1st, 2009

Although the slump of the economy has created a hiring freeze for most companies, once the market picks back up many open positions will need to be filled. At this time, there will be an over-abundance of applicants and many great executives to choose from. We have been told what to do when interviewing, but listed below are three common mistakes that must be avoided during the hiring process.

1. Emotional Hiring

A great interviewer will not necessarily make a great worker. Often time interviewers make the mistake of hiring a candidate who really “wows” them in an interview. While rapport and personality are important when finding the perfect person for your company, there is much more that managers must uncover to ensure they choose the best candidate.

Research has consistently shown that one of the best predictors of job performance is a work sample. If you're hiring a graphic designer, get them to design something. If you're hiring a salesperson, ask them to sell you something. The reality is that interviews are less predictive of job performance than work samples, job-knowledge tests, and peer ratings of past job performance. Even a simple intelligence test is dramatically more useful.

Giving job tests might be the easiest competitive advantage you ever acquire. While your competitors hire friendly people whose "biggest weakness" is "working too hard," you'll be discovering the true stars who you know can do their job well.

2. Vague Descriptions

In order to attract top people, top performance must first be defined and built into the job description. You can give each interviewer a performance profile, which emphasizes what a person must do to be successful in the job. This differs from the traditional job description which is based on experience, skills, and education. Typical candidates have matching skills and qualifications but the top candidates can do the job at a superior level. Basing your job description on specific performance objectives improves the quality of the applicants for your position, and improves the objectivity of your screening and interviewing processes.

Enter the interview with “scenario” based questions regarding issues that relate directly to your knowledge of that position. For example, if the employee that last held that position had difficulty with a specific responsibility, ask the candidate how they would react in a similar situation. Develop the interview with topics and questions that will not only predict if the candidate is able to fill the position, but if the candidate will excel in the position.

3. Inconsistent process

While the most common hiring process is through interviewing, most employers do not have a consistent process implemented. It is important to create standard criterion that you can use to evaluate each candidate. This will help you to compare your evaluations of each candidate so that you are sure to make sure that you are choosing the best fit. While each candidate’s interview will be tailored based upon the certain position they are applying for, implementing a standard process will help ensure that you choose the best candidate.

Another benefit of instilling a consistent process when hiring is ensuring that you obtain all of the necessary information to make the very best hire. Whether it is through work samples or aptitude tests, offering standard objectives will help you guarantee that you are making the best choice during the essential decision making process.

 

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