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How to Hire the Best Brain for the Job

The best leaders know how to hire the best team — and it’s not all about evaluating resumes. In fact, the resume is just the starting block. To find the best person for your business team, you need to think big: think about passion, personality, and potential.

When you look for new employees, you pick brains by choosing the ones you want to hire, and also you pick brains by checking those brains to determine whether they have what you need. If you’re just starting up a business, you may be picking a lot of brains to fulfill the mission of your organization. If you have a small business, one wrong person can make a big difference in the group dynamics and productivity. Use these approaches to make sure you get the right team.

  • Look for those who love the work. The more employees who love the work and the vision you create, the more likely they are to share that vision and make the entire company more productive. Work that you love energizes you. A person who loves her job will have a related hobby (for example, people who work in animal shelters usually have pets), related personal skills, and related work experience.

  • Look for workers that you love. Choose people you would like to work with — even if this employee is not going to work directly with you. If you already like the people who work for you and you feel good about the person you’re interviewing, you can reasonably expect that they can all get along. Being a good judge of character is a valuable leadership trait, but you need to give yourself time and several meetings to determine whether that instinct continues.

    Of course you want someone who can do the job. But given two candidates who can do the work, hire the one you like best. Some hiring managers even choose the lesser qualified person if they think he can fit in better with the team of workers. A quarterback whose arm isn’t as strong but who can unite the team is more valuable than one who doesn’t get team rapport and can throw a little farther.

  • Look for leaders. If you believe that every employee you have can’t be a star, you’re probably hiring the wrong people. Every single person in your employ should be a potential leader. As the leader, you already have followers, many with great leadership potential. Hiring someone who simply wants to follow the followers shortchanges you and your organization. You want people who are thinkers and risk-takers, employees who shake things up a bit and make your business better.

If you haven’t found the perfect brain for the job, don’t hire because you’re desperate or frustrated. Keep looking and you can find the right person. You’re better off taking your time to find that person who loves your work, loves your workers, and shares your values.

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