5 common hiring mistakes

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Inspired by Lee Colan’s article in Inc.com, here is our take on this issue.

1. Hiring Decisions are made by just your “gut” and not together with your head
While we are not against using your “gut” to make decisions, we feel that your “gut” is influenced by the things that you can consciously pick up. If you can improve the quality of cues that you get, the better your “gut” will work for you. The idea is simple, rubbish in, rubbish out.

So how do you improve the quality of information that you receive to make decisions? Create and consistently use a selection process that has various points of data collection, both qualitative and quantitative. This process should be designed to capture the values that you are looking for.

2. Not knowing what you are looking for at the start of the process
Many times, we all have a “rough idea” of what the person should be, but being specific helps greatly. It gives you a benchmark to assess your candidates and how they fair against those parameters. Even if you don’t find someone that meets all the check boxes, at least you can establish where they are, then decide what and how much you can compromise on when deciding to hire.

3. Looking at why a candidate might fit instead of why it might not be a fit
Often, during the process, we only look at reasons to hire a person. With this method, we fail to see where the candidate’s problem areas are. So instead, we have to consider why there might not be a fit—if it might be a potential problem in the long run and if it is something that can be worked on. If a decision is made to hire, then it is also a commitment to plan for training and opportunities to help in those areas identified.

4. Insufficient Listening
You are probably looking to sell the job, but any good sales rep will tell you that listening and actively asking questions are the best way to get people to be interested. The great thing about this approach is that you can structure it to find behavioural cues that you want to know about, establish their skills sets and determine if they fit into the company.

By all means, talk about the company, but use it as a lead-in to questions that you want to ask. Listen to the responses and gain the information that you want as well.

5. Scratching the surface
Think like a good cop. Don’t take answers for what they are.

If you feel rude to probe; don’t. Ultimately, if you can establish the facts and make a good decision, you are doing a favour for yourself, the company and the candidate. If a bad hiring decision is made, candidates suffer as well, by taking a job that is not suited for them.


Other things to consider to improve the process:
What pre-screening tools are available to you?
—Do you have a platform for assessments?
—Have you considered video interviews?

How are you engaging your candidates?
—Are you using social media?
—What is your employer brand?

How are you managing the process?
—Are you tracking your decisions?
—How are you collaborating with the other decision-makers?

If these questions are what you are thinking about, speak to us at the contact page.

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