5 elements of successful hiring
In addition to the technical competencies and relevant experience, trying to get a sense of these five personality traits while interviewing could help identifying the right candidates.
Identifying and hiring talented people who can deal with the immense complexity and challenges organizations are facing today, is one of the most important skills all managers must have. Despite having a variety of recruitment tools, techniques and processes, performing this emotionally charged task is not easy for most of us.
In addition to the technical competencies and relevant experience the respective job role demands for, trying to get a sense of the following five personality traits while interviewing people helped me in identifying the right candidates.
Do they believe in your organization’s goal? Are they interested in knowing how their role contributes to the larger goal of the organization? Are they able to clearly demonstrate a purpose driven approach in making career choices? Purpose driven employees have higher engagement levels, therefore it is vital to try and understand if the candidate possesses this personality trait.
Was the candidate able to impress you with his enthusiasm and drive? Place them in a difficult situation and look if they exhibit passion, and positivity while trying to solve the case. Solving complex problems and addressing the most challenging social or business issues require possessing lots of positive energy, dealing with ambiguity and getting things done with limited resources. Look out for people who are a bundle of energy (lively, happy, excited, and positive), because they generate the same in people around them.
Is there a synergy in what they write, speak and believe in? Are they true to what they have written in their Statements of Purpose or Resumes? Spot people who are authentic, can walk the talk, and are dependable. Genuine people make for happier workplaces.
High Learning Agility:
What have they learnt in the last one year? How have they implemented these learnings in their work? Are they able to better situations by learning quickly from mistakes? Ask if they can show you any such instances demonstrating strategy shift, design changes, key learnings from policy failures, etc. Today’s volatile business environment requires employees with high learning agility.
What are their core values and principles? What type of organizational culture do they expect? Check if the candidate is a good culture fit by gauging his responses against values and behaviors the organization encourages. Narrating certain incidents related to group dynamics and listening to their perspectives might help understanding this better. Culture-fit people find it easier to thrive.
Stephen A. Schwarzman, in his new book, WHAT IT TAKES, says “The more I can get candidates out of interview mode and into a natural conversation, the easier it becomes for me to evaluate how they think, react and might adapt to change”. This could be an effective approach to identify if the interviewee has the desired personality traits. Good personality traits are harder to cultivate than technical knowledge. Placing good emphasis on them while making recruitment decisions will help building more productive and successful work environments.
PS: When you have to make a decision, there is always a trade-off. As perfect solutions to identify the traits of an individual are not yet available, it could mean depending more on your intuition than algorithm.