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Seven Mistakes that Prevent Companies from Hiring the Best Available Talent

John Fiumano

by
John Fiumano, CEO

Executive Alliance hopes that this article will help you to avoid some of the mistakes that inhibit you from hiring the best talent in the industry.

 

  1. Failing to prepare candidates

    Do not treat the initial interview as a blind date!

    Candidates interested in preparing themselves for an interview are more likely to utilize the tools available to them on the job. In fact, a lack of interest on the candidate’s behalf can be seen as a red flag for hiring. Below are items we encourage our candidates to research prior to interviewing for a potential opening:

    • The company’s products, industries and services
    • Problems or challenges that the team might be facing
    • Industry issues that the company might be facing
    • Articles, web pages and other media sources
    • Historical information on the company’s growth
    • Financial and profitability data (if available)
  2. Treat the interview as an open book test

    If candidates do not take advantage of the resources available, you’ve learned something. If they do take the time and initiative to research a potential employer, then you can expect to have more insight into what they will have to offer as a part of your team.

  3. Failure to leverage the interview into other useful contacts

    Sure, Human Resources asks each candidate to recommend and refer his or her professional associates for other opportunities. We find it much more productive to have the hiring manager do this! Potential candidates are more compelled to tell their potential boss whom they know in the industry. Once you have some referrals, start to develop a network and invite these potential employees to a company outing or other networking forum. This is a great way to identify potential new hires before critical needs arise.

  4. Too much “Question – Answer”

    Every interview should have a component that takes the candidate out of the “ask – respond” interview.

    Many poor hiring choices are made because the candidate interviews well but, once hired, does not mesh well with team members or the company culture. Take the candidate to the company cafeteria or on the center floor and observe their interaction with the other employees and potential peers. This will often help you to avoid hiring candidates that are a bad fit. Additionally, peers often provide valuable insight into a potential hire’s skill set.

  5. Inadequate reference checks

    Too many companies do an inadequate job of checking references, often delegating the task to Human Resources. We suggest that the hiring manager make these phone calls! Again this is an excellent opportunity to network. Peers tend to be blunter and more open with one another. There are legal issues here and they should be addressed with the hiring manager before the phone calls take place. One question we love is “If you had the opportunity to hire this person back to your team, would you?” While the answer matters, it’s the hesitation or enthusiasm in answering the question that is critical.

  6. Unreasonably long decision process

    Companies should set a specific time frame for the decision process. Candidates are less likely to accept an offer when made to wait an excessive period of time. Companies can develop a poor reputation by treating the hiring process indecisively and candidates disrespectfully.

  7. Unusually long offer process

    If your company does not have a standard streamlined offer process, create it!

    Candidates see a long offer process as a red flag when looking to join a company. They may begin to doubt that the offer will happen and begin to reconsider other offers. Candidates being hired into management positions also see this as hindering to their own ability to perform. “What will happen when I have to bring somebody on board that I need desperately?” And again your company’s reputation is at risk here.

If your company is making any of these mistakes, eliminate one blunder at a time and enjoy the pay off as you move on to improve the quality of your team.


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