Your Reputation Can Impact Hiring Top Talent

We were retained to conduct a search for a VP of Marketing. The position had been open for more than six months, during which time the company had interviewed ten people who showed little interest in the position or the company. In fact, one offer had been turned down. At first glance this seemed strange, since it was a good company offering reasonable compensation.

Shortly after contacting prospective candidates working for competitors and in related industries, the mystery became clear. The company had a reputation for high turnover, lack of innovative products, poor leadership and low pay. One candidate stated, “It's known as a “burn 'em and churn 'em company.” Another candidate stated, “I'm interested in hearing about the position as long as it isn't X company” of course it was X company. All of these issues had been true three years back, but new management had since come on and started changing things. The reputation, unfortunately, lagged behind.

In conjunction with the company we put together a marketing plan beginning with changing the Web site. We encouraged the company to address the baggage of the past while emphasizing the changes that had been made The redesigned site also included testimonials from happy employees, information about the improved company benefits and management's new commitment to employees. Another section discussed the company's new products and how they were performing in the marketplace, as well as the company's dedication to R&D. Finally, we changed how potential candidates were treated when they came in for interviews. All interviews were now viewed as a PR event.

As a result, even if a candidate didn't end up getting the job, they still walked away with a completely different image of the company. Most walked away now wanting the job.

We ultimately filled the search with a candidate who originally told us she didn't even want to interview. In fact, she told us the same thing three times before finally agreeing to an interview. She came away overwhelmed by the change and impressed with the new management. She was eager to go to work for the reborn organization.

Understanding your company’s reputation is an important issue when conducting a search. Regardless of your reputation, developing a compelling marketing plan is key to a successful search. Ensuring your company’s image is well received by candidates will help you attract more top candidates and reduce the cost per hire.

Start with your Web site, as this is the first place all candidates go once hearing the name of the company.

Remember all interviews are a PR event.

Join the other 10,000 CEOs, key executives and HR professionals and download a FREE copy of our best-selling book, “You’re NOT The Person I Hired.”  Just CLICK HERE  and under the FREE Hiring Resources section you can download our free eBook.

Retaining your best talent is always the best thing any company can do. Download our FREE  Non-Monetary Rewards and Recognitions Matrix. It will help you retain your best people without additional compensation. CLICK HERE to download under the Free Resources section.

If this was helpful please pass it along to others. I welcome your thoughts and comments.

Brad Remillard

Hiring Top Talent Requires a Process

We have discovered that in many companies the hiring process is random, unstructured, and often the people are not highly skilled at hiring. It is no wonder that for many companies hiring top talent is a challenge.

Most companies typically have very sophisticated processes and procedures for just about every activity except hiring. This in our opinion includes the Fortune 500. So often it is assumed that the hiring manager or a colleague has hired so many people they must be good. We conducted a recent, non-scientific survey of CEOs and Key Execs. We asked, “How many of you have audited, not co-interviewed, the hiring managers on your team to determine if they are competent to be interviewing?” Less than 5% responded positively.

This would never happen with any other activity in a company. This just validated why so often the wrong person gets through the hiring process.

All that’s required is a structured approach that enables companies to avoid the predictable pitfalls that plague many high-level hires. Based on our experience with hiring thousands of executives, we have developed The Success Factor Methodology that consists of eight distinct steps:

1. Build a multi-faceted Success Factor Snapshot to guide the entire
search process. (Click link for examples)
2. Implement a deep sourcing strategy to reach and attract selective
and sleeper candidates.
3. Identify and verify success prospects. Create a Compelling Marketing Statement (Click link for examples)
4. Create structured dossiers on selected candidates to enable objective,
unbiased evaluation and comparison.
5. Conduct Success Factor-based panel interviews using a
“magnifying glass” probe methodology.
6. Proactively address and overcome obstacles to hire throughout the
entire active interviewing process.
7. Streamline compensation and benefit negotiations through structured
interview-based preliminary groundwork.
8. Follow through on the hire with proven transition communication
and work style assessment, coaching and facilitation.

Together, these steps comprise the ‘Success Factor Methodology,’ a
proven process for improving your ability to find, recruit and hire top level
executive talent. Each step in the process requires the full collaboration
of stakeholders in all the business units affected by the potential
hire. When you employ the methodology in a consistent and systematic
manner, the outcome is a hire with a significantly increased probability of delivering the performance level you are seeking.

Join the other 10,000 CEOs, key executives and HR professionals and download a FREE copy of our best-selling book, “You’re NOT The Person I Hired.”  Just CLICK HERE  and under the FREE Hiring Resources section you can download our free eBook.

Retaining your best talent is always the best thing any company can do. Download our FREE  Non-Monetary Rewards and Recognitions Matrix. It will help you retain your best people without additional compensation. CLICK HERE to download under the Free Resources section.

We welcome your thoughts and comments. Please let us know if this was helpful. If it was, please share with others.

Brad Remillad

An Easy Hiring Mistake To Fix

Q. Are there common mistakes companies make when hiring that could be easily avoided?

 The most common mistakes are a manifestation of the most common problems with hiring. The biggest problem with hiring is that few companies invest in training their managers on how to hire. Since many managers are not trained, mistakes abound. If more companies would train their employees on how to properly hire, most of the common mistakes would go away.

A few years back we actually conducted a research project to identify the 10 biggest hiring mistakes companies make when hiring. You can download the project from our website under the Hiring Manager menu item (www.impacthiringsolutions.com). Surprisingly, when a company deals with the first mistake many of the others are positively impacted. Focusing on training your people and fixing the first mistake will have a dramatic impact on your hiring.

The number one mistake companies make is that they don't properly define the job. In fact, the traditional job descriptions used by many companies are worthless for hiring and cause more harm than good.

If you dissect most company's job descriptions they really define a person and not the job. For example, most job descriptions list traits of a person. We want a minimum of  X years of experience, minimum education, a list of the minimum skills the person must have, then the ever expanding list of meaningless traits, team player, strong thinker, thought leader, change agent, assertive, and of course good communication skills. Granted, the minimum duties and tasks the person is expected to perform will also be listed. Does this sound familiar? If you answered, “Yes” then look closely. Not only does this define a person, but what level of person do most job descriptions define? The minimum qualified person. When you advertise for the least qualified that is what you get.

Instead of defining the least qualified person, start defining success in the job and then go and find a person that can deliver that success. For example, for a customer service manager, the real job and success in the role might be to improve customer satisfaction scores from X to Y or to ensure X% of customer issues are solved on the first call. This is the real job and what defines success in the role. Now go out and find a person that can explain to you in the interview how they would go about doing this. When you find one that can do these things, they have the right experience, the right skills, the right education and the right number of years of experience or they wouldn't be able to accomplish these things.

Join the other 10,000 CEOs, key executives and HR professionals and download a FREE copy of our best-selling book, “You're NOT The Person I Hired.”  Just CLICK HERE  and under the FREE Hiring Resources section you can download our free eBook.

Retaining your best talent is always the best thing any company can do. Download our FREE  Non-Monetary Rewards and Recognitions Matrix. It will help you retain your best people without additional compensation. CLICK HERE to download under the Free Resources section.

I welcome your comments and feedback.

Brad Remillard

Is It Possbile To Find Reliable Recruiters?

Q. Our company has had bad experiences when using recruiters. How do we find a reliable recruiter?

A. One of the most important things a good recruiter must be able to do is recruit passive candidates, i.e. candidates that are not actively looking for a new job, but open to talk for the right opportunity. Good recruiters must be able to quickly identify the motivations of the candidate, present a compelling reason for them to talk with the recruiter, and gain the trust of the candidate. If they can’t do this, then those candidates willing to make a job change will tell the recruiter “Thanks, but no thanks.” Great recruiters are able to demonstrate to top talent how this opportunity will help them grow, how they will make an impact on the organization and work for a boss they can respect.

Good to great recruiters should add a lot more value to the hiring process than just finding candidates. The best recruiters are trusted advisers to the hiring manager and candidate. The recruiter meets multiple times at the company in order to understand the company’s culture and they should spend time with the hiring manager putting together the measurable goals to be achieved by the new person. The recruiter should help to develop an interviewing plan, they should clearly understand the needs of the candidate and communicate those to the company. The best recruiters will personally conduct a face-to-face interview with all candidates before presenting them to the company. A good recruiter will anticipate potential landmines, such as compensation issues, and address them before they explode. Finally, a good recruiter will alert the hiring manager to any issues that would cause the offer to be turned down, before the end of the process. In short, great recruiters do a lot more than just find people. They make sure that all the issues are addressed so the deal comes together and is a win/win for both. If the recruiter does a good job, two things will never happen; the hiring manager will never think, “You’re not the person I hired” and the candidate will never think, “This is not the position I accepted” or worse, “You’re not the person that hired me.”

You can explore our audio library, download free examples of compelling marketing statements, download a summary of our research project that identifies the biggest hiring mistakes, and get our culture assessment tool by clicking the links. All of these are free.

I welcome your thoughts and comments. Please forward this to your contacts on Facebook, LinkedIn, or anyone you think would benefit from this article.

Brad Remillard

Why is it So Difficult to Hire Great Sales Professionals?

Difficulty of Hiring Great Sales Professionals

In over a decade of presenting to CEO and Key Executive Groups our popular program, “You're NOT the Person I Hired“, I’ve discovered that the most difficult hire in a entrepreneurial-middle market company is a professional sales role.

If I present to a group with 15-20 members, half the group will be struggling with hiring outstanding sales professionals.

What makes it so difficult to hire this type of employee?

There are a number of factors that contribute to making hiring mistakes when it comes to the sales function. Before my Partner and I wrote our book “You’re NOT the Person I Hired”, we commissioned a study examining hiring mistakes. This study is available in the our FREE Resource Library. You get the Executive Summary of our Research Project – The Top Ten Hiring Mistakes by clicking here.

The research study was primarily focused on hiring at the executive level. However, the problems that lead to hiring mistakes and errors at an executive level are more significant and present a greater risk in hiring sales professionals. Let’s tackle the first mistake that leads to hiring failure.

The first mistake made by the vast majority of hiring managers is not defining SUCCESS for a role.

NOT defining success is a recipe for disaster in hiring.

Those who have seen our speaker presentation know that we recommend defining success through a structured process called SOAR and the end product is a tool called a Success Factor Snapshot. This success definition has absolutely NOTHING to do with the traditional job description.

Most job descriptions are worthless as a tool for measuring and predicting future success through an interview. You can read more about defining success in the article on a previous blog posting, titled “When An “A” Candidate is NOT an “A” Employee.

It takes a few hours to define success for a particular position. The key steps include:

  • Connecting sales outcomes to the company objectives.
  • Listing all the obstacles involved in achieving the desired results.
  • Developing a time-phased, quantifiable plan of action items.
  • Defining a future expected result – such as increase sales by 12% for the home health care market.

Your investment of time in building a one-page Success Factor Snapshot will dramatically raise hiring accuracy by:

  • Focusing your search in which ponds to fish for the best talent.
  • Eliminating the embellishment and exaggeration common in sales interviews.
  • Leveraging a success-based management tool to keep your new hire on track after they join your team.

Barry

Originally posted on the Vistage Buzz Blog