It is no surprise when we say your company’s most important asset is a human one. Successful leaders of growth oriented companies know that building a productive, competitive company, requires developing the best hiring processes to search for the right person.

But how do you build a company where everyone is contributing, productive and building economic value? Of course, it starts with finding and hiring the best candidate; you must then develop the business processes to train and motivate both the employees and their supervisors for productivity. I would like to share some hiring  ideas I picked up reading Choose the Right Person for the Right Job Every Time, by Lora Davila and Louise Kursmark.

Remember that every hire you make is representing your company, the company’s customers, its reputation, and your investment. To have the best company you must hire and employ the right people. The following information will get you started in the right direction toward developing the best hiring business process.

5 steps to building a successful Interview program

1)    Define the job description. Start by defining the purpose of the position. Next list the job duties and primary responsibilities. Give a complete description of the performance outcomes the person will be required to deliver. Write out job descriptions for each position in the company for which you will be hiring.

2)    Determine success factors. From the job description outline you have prepared, determine what success factors will qualify a candidate for the job. There are four categories from which to measure competency to qualify a candidate:

  • Talents are what an individual is wired to do. Talents are unique patterns of thoughts, feelings, and behavior that a person enjoys repeating often. What talents will be required to excel in the job description?
  • Technical skills and knowledge may include distinct knowledge, such as knowing a particular software program, or completing a specific course of education, or demonstrating a high degree of proficiency in a well-defined skill, such as in sales. What technical skills and knowledge will be required to excel in the job description?
  • Performance skills are behavior-based skills that will be required to perform the job. Example of behavior skills would be someone who is a good listener, a person who is patient or has a tolerance for stress, or someone who has excellent communication abilities. What performance or behavior-based skills will be required to excel as noted in the job description?
  • Motivational work environment preferences determine a person’s level of enjoyment and satisfaction they receive from their job’s working environment. For example, one individual may derive more enjoyment and as a result be more productive in a team work environment, while another person may prefer accomplishing tasks alone. It will be important to identify these work environment preferences so your interview process searches for a candidate who is a good match for what the job description offers.

Write out the qualifying competencies for each of the four categories on a success factor chart for each job description.

3)    Develop the right questions to uncover the competencies for which you are searching. Your questions can be comprised of –

  • Traditional questions which are open-ended, groundbreaking questions aimed at getting to know the candidate better.
  • Situational questions requiring the candidate to formulate an answer to a hypothetical situation.
  • Behavioral questions designed to get information about specific past performance.

Insert your questions designed to uncover the competencies for which you are searching under each of the four categories on the “success factor chart.”

4)    Develop an outline for the interview procedure. For example, your outline may include starting with some comfortable small talk, recording your first impression, proceeding to revealing information about the company, and continuing to reveal facts about the position, performance outcome, and expectations. The flow of conversation may move into demonstrating how this position fits into the bigger picture of the company and next moving to your interview questions. There are many successful interview formats; the main point is to have a written outline to follow to give the interview structure.

5)    Develop a rating chart. It helps to evaluate each candidate by filling out a detailed rating chart as soon as the interview is completed. The rating chart should evaluate (on a scale of 1-3) each of the competencies for which you are searching under the four categories on the success factor chart.

Developing a winning interview program is the starting point to building a successful company. Many small business owners get so caught up in the day to day challenges of conducting business that they overlook the importance of devoting time to developing the best hiring processes to find the best candidate. Unfortunately, the consequence of failing to establish efficient hiring practices is very expensive, costing the company loss of productivity, loss of revenue, loss of customers, and loss of profits.

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