Hiring your next key staff member is a critical decision for your business and something that shouldn’t be taken lightly. However, many company’s who don’t have a designated person for hiring often make some critical mistakes when searching through resumes and going through the interview process. Whenever in doubt, remember the saying “hire slow, fire fast.”
The first thing to assess BEFORE you begin the interview process is what qualities this new opening requires. Is this an admin role where you need an organized, consistent, and dedicated person or is this a sales role where being assertive, money-motivated, and outgoing are desirable traits?
While interviewing it’s important to assess if the person’s natural qualities and abilities match your desires for the position.
Second, remember that SKILLS are teachable, but willingness, openness to change, and capabilities are much harder to change in people. If someone has all the desirable traits, a willingness to learn, and a strong dedication to what they are doing they will be able to quickly pick up on the new type of work and will more often than not prove to be a great team member. On the other hand, a person who looks great on paper, has a lot of experience, but isn’t open to change and doing things the way of the new company will cause more grief than good. In both situations the outcome will vary, so you have to apply some practical judgment to your decision.
It’s critical that your interviewee has PASSION for their work. While it may be difficult to administer a passion test during your interview, be sure to ask what the person enjoys both in life and in work. Often we hire the wrong person simply because they are good or experienced at something, but they may have lost their passion for it which can lead to an unhappy employee and an even unhappier you.
Overall, look at the total package a person has to offer. At times one strength can outweigh several weaknesses. During the interview process be sure to LISTEN a lot more than talk, you want to give the person a chance to talk you into hiring them, or even better to talk you out of it.