It’s a Matter of Style!

Publication 11, Issue 4

Look Beyond Technical Competence when Recruiting in Today’s Market
How many times in your career have you heard or said the words “this employee just isn’t the right fit.”  Organizations spend a lot of money recruiting, hiring and training staff to be successful. Well, unless you hire the right person from the “get-go” you could be wasting a lot of time and effort hiring and training someone who may not be a good fit for your organization.  Traditional interviews were meant to screen candidates who could type 60 words per minute, write Java code or conduct in-depth science experiments, and if they passed those hurdles or some technical testing they were hired.

Assessing technical competence alone, in this new economy, just doesn’t cut it.  Managers who have changed the way they interview have had greater success in finding that candidate who is technically competent and whose style complements or “fits” the organization’s culture.

Here’s my formula for success:

skills + candidate’s style + fit with company culture = successful candidate

And, here’s how to use it!

Of course, the technical skills are a given, so let’s talk about personality style and culture.  Remember my Playground Personalities…and listen up for words and observe actions the candidates may say or use during the interviews.  For example:

Peacemakers – may use the words “I feel” and will reference people and the importance of working relationships in their responses.  Peacemakers will have great eye contact!

Organizers – may use the words “I think” and will respond by using points, 1-2-3 or short phrases – and their answers will be clear and precise.  Organizers will bring extra copies of their resume to the interview, just to make sure the interviewer as the latest version!

Revolutionaries – usually talk in reverse terms – for example, they will tell you what they don’t like before they’ll tell you what they do like!  Their responses will be short and to the point and full of action!  Revolutionaries may fidget in their seat with each passing interview question!

Steamrollers – speak in philosophical terms and may use the words “I believe.”  They will respond in “big picture” terms and not provide a lot of detail.  A Steamroller may draw a picture or diagram during the interview!

So, be true to yourself about your company’s culture – whether it’s friendly, bureaucratic, always in motion or entrepreneurial – own it!   The culture isn’t good or bad – it is what it is.  Match it to the candidates’s style and you’ll have a great fit.

Using my Playground Personalities and combining them with my “hiring formula for success,” will make interviewing easier and save you time and money so you hire the right person from the “get-go!”  Good luck!

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