Posted by: gotrain | February 18, 2009

Now is the time to strengthen your team

Last week I was speaking with a business owner who told me that one of his short term projects is to hire new talent to replace people who have not lived up to his expectations. He said that the current economic crisis that has caused large employers to reduce their workforce has created opportunities for him to build a better team.

He said that when the job market was hot he could not replace people because he could not find and afford people that would do a better job. Now that more people are out of jobs and ready to work for less than the large employers were paying, he now sees himself in the position to make the moves he wanted to for some time.

Those that are looking to hire to either replace staff or to act on new opportunities must go through a hiring process that will end with a decision of who is the best candidate to choose. This is a process than can be very tricky and is not always easy and never foolproof. And if you are not careful you can make the same hiring mistakes as in the past and end up with no improvement.

Imagine going though the whole hiring process, which can be quite costly and time consuming and then finding out six months later that the new person is no better than the person you replaced. Or your new project opportunity is not getting on track and it is draining your resources because the new hire is not getting up to speed fast enough.

Let’s take a quick moment and review the hiring process to make sure you maximize the opportunities to hire that star performer.

  • Aggressively market the position in the right places and with great sales copy that rises above the ordinary. Instead of saying what the job requires, sell the job as a career position that can fulfill someone’s idea of a dream job for their specific talent.
  • Have the candidate write you a letter stating why they would be the ideal candidate for the job and how their employment will benefit your firm. Those who really want the job will take the time to do this well and will save you time in qualifying each resume.
  • Form a team to conduct interviews and make the hiring decision. That way you have different perspectives and you force yourself to be more objective. Studies show that most hiring decisions are made in the first 5 minutes of an interview but diverse opinions can counter this tendency.
  • Take your time but don’t take too long either to make a decision. Invest a good amount of time getting to know the person, not just an hour. You will be spending a lot of time working together so take the time before you commit to know what you’re getting.
  • Test and assess your candidates for both technical job skills and for job fit. A technical test could be to ask the person to prepare a balance sheet if the person is applying for a financial role. Be prepared with a test task that is typical for your department or new project.

Assessing the person for total job fit is comprised of matching knowledge and skills, along with attitude and value and as well, thinking style, personality and interests. This can only be determined with any accuracy using assessments.

The The Profile XT from Profiles International measures thinking style, personality in terms of behavioural traits and six occupational interests. It also matches the person’s scores against a customized job profile for the position. This is the most powerful kind of assessment because you are matching someone to the requirements of the job.

On Thursday March 12th at 1:00 PM EST I will be hosting a webinar to present how to hire star performers and make the best hiring decisions using the best resources available today.

Please register for the webinar as space is limited by sending an email to You will receive the log in information. By email.

This webinar is essential if you want to make better hiring decisions and build a high performance team for the future.

Stephen Goldberg
Be Free to Work Less, Earn More, Enjoy Life


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