5 Tips to Making a Good Hire
By: P.J. Simmons
Making a new hire is not the easiest thing in the world. This rings truer for a smaller organization who dreams of growth and long-term sustainability. Finding the right fit and having the right person on your team can seem like a daunting task. In fact, it should be.
Organizations are run by people. For it to grow, the people have to have the right skill set, established plan, and in the words of Jim Collins, “be in the right seat on the bus.” People are the way in which your organization is going to grow. This is the reason making the right hire can either catalyze, hinder, or even stalemate your growth.
So how does one make a good hire? Below are 5 Tips that I’ve noticed and learned in this daunting process:
There’s a difference between doers and thinkers. Thinkers think about getting stuff done. Doers actually get them done. This is something I personally had to go through the ringer with once I left college. I had personally been in a mode over the last four years after college of being able to articulate theory, strategies, and fresh ideas. But I didn’t really know jack about getting something done. Creativity, fresh ideas, etc. can always be developed as one continues in the job, but if an individual can’t execute, the whole organization suffers.
Hire Slow/Fire Fast.
Finding the right fit for your team is vital in the long-term growth of the organization. I know the temptation all too well….“let’s just get somebody in here to get some of this stuff done.” You know, those lingering projects that you never have time to put your attention towards. BE CAREFUL. Know that you’re not just hiring for the ‘here and now’, but you want to see growth and scalability. So if that means you need to do some things yourself until you find the “right fit”, well, then that’s exactly what you need to do.
On the other hand, if you come to find out that someone on your team is not the right fit, you need to work hard to help them transition out of their role and either figure out what role they can best serve in with your organization, or help them find somewhere else with another organization that fits better.
Some great resources on learning about your staff or potential staff member’s skill sets, personalities, ideal work environments, and best roles, check out these two resources for assessments:
- Right Path: www.rightpath.com
- Hogan Assessments: www.hoganassessments.com
Look at Their Track Record.
What has this applicant done in the past that would make them a good fit for this position? Note that the best answer to this question is not always if the applicant has had these responsibilities or same job description as before, however, what has he/she gotten done in their previous endeavors? Have they had success? Have they moved ideas forward? Have they executed? Have they started anything?
Regarding college students, the temptation (and excuse from them), can be, “Well, they don’t have any experience, therefore they don’t have a track record.” I beg to differ. If you are having college student applicants, ask, “What have you been doing over the last four years?” Have they sought out internships? Have they started initiatives with their friends? If all they’ve been doing is going to class, studying, and hanging out with friends, then don’t hire them. Nothing teaches you like getting out there and getting your hands dirty.
Look for a Stable Personal Life.
This is very important. If your applicant does not have a stable and healthy personal life, their job requirements will not be given the attention that they need have in order for your organization to grow and succeed. Regarding stable personal lives, I’m not speaking of personal tragedies at home, or unforeseen and trying seasons. I’m speaking more about the personal lives that your applicant is living outside of the workplace. Are they disciplined? Are they out partying all the time? Is there constant drama between them and other people? A simple social media search can show you any red flags that may be there and tell you what type of personal lives they are living.
Does Their Heart Align with Your Mission and Vision?
This question does not equate with the belief that the applicant will want to spend the rest of his/her life here, but what this question does ask is, “Are you passionate about what we’re passionate about?” The answer to this question is found out clearest in either their confirmation or hesitation in responding to your mission and vision statements. Do they buy in to what you are doing? Are they passionate about what you’re doing? Do they have a legitimate desire to help you get to where you want to go? These are all great questions to ponder when assessing if their heart aligns with what you’re doing.
Once again, making new hires is never easy. There’s the constant tension of both excitement and stress in finding the next one who you’ll be adding to your team. The above tips are by no means the scientific structure of making the right hire, but my gosh they are a good start.
P.J. Simmons is the founder and director of Gospel Driven Entrepreneur and the host of the Gospel Driven Entrepreneur podcast. His heart is to equip entrepreneurs in connecting their faith to their work, intentionally engaging culture to bring about the kingdom of heaven on earth. P.J. lives in Atlanta, GA with his wife Ashley.