Hiring the right candidate is crucial to the success of any organization. Unfortunately, many companies still have errors in their hiring processes that lead to bad hires. Here are five of the more common mistakes an organization will encounter, and how to prevent them.
Mistake No. 1: Not creating a clear and complete benchmark for the position.
Without a clear understanding of what the position requires, it’s impossible to find the right candidate. We know that “soft skills” are the reason that new employees succeed or fail. It is surprising, then, that many hiring managers focus solely on acquired skills, knowledge, training, and experience requirements when creating job profiles. These job profiles leave out the most important qualities of a person that you should be assessing! New employees succeed based on their attitude, motivation, character, personality, intelligence, and temperament.
Solution: Create a clear and complete benchmark for the position that includes the required activities, qualifications, knowledge, skills, and abilities. But don’t stop there! Define the temperament and personality traits needed for success in the role, including attitude, motivation, aptitude, and character. Evaluate candidates against this benchmark to ensure a good fit.
Mistake No. 2: Not leveraging candidate assessments.
Interviews alone are not always reliable indicators of a candidate’s temperament, values, and work style. Without a validated assessment tool, you may miss important information about a candidate’s natural tendencies and potential to succeed in the role.
Solution: Use validated assessments to supplement your interviews. Assessments provide objective information about a candidate’s personality traits, work style, and preferences. Use this information to better understand the candidate and determine if they are a good fit for the position and the organization.
Mistake No. 3: Relying on unstructured, conversational interviews.
Interviews that lack structure and standardized questions can lead to unreliable and inconsistent evaluations. Without clear guidelines, interviewers may ask different questions to different candidates, making it difficult to compare candidates fairly.
Solution: Go back to the benchmark you created for the position and design a set of interview questions that assesses all elements you defined as necessary in your benchmark. Develop a clear and consistent process for conducting interviews and evaluating candidates to ensure fairness and consistency.
Mistake No. 4: Not considering boss fit, team fit, and culture fit.
Hiring a candidate who is technically qualified for the job, but does not fit well with the boss, team, or organizational culture, can lead to low morale, decreased productivity, and high turnover.
Solution: Consider not only the candidate’s skills and qualifications but also their personality, values, and work style. Identify the personality profiles of your current employees and the organizational culture, and use this information to evaluate the candidate’s fit.
Mistake No. 5: Onboarding unsuccessfully.
New employees usually make the decision to stay with or leave a new organization within their first 90 days. While they may well stay beyond that 90-day window, the decision has been made and it requires way more effort to change a mind than to get it right in the first place. Even the most qualified candidate may struggle to perform well in a new role without proper training and support. Inadequate onboarding can lead to frustration, confusion, and decreased productivity. Some candidates may succeed despite inadequate onboarding, but they are unlikely to stay with you for the long term.
Solution: We are all familiar with the Golden Rule: Treat others how you would like to be treated. At McQuaig, we prefer you to use the Platinum Rule for onboarding: Treat others how they want to be treated. Spend some time considering your new employee’s personality, learning style, and preferences when it comes to working with others and incorporate all of this into your onboarding plan. Personality assessments can equip you with deep insights into these areas. Based on the assessment results of the new employee, managers and supervisors will be prepared to provide the necessary support and training to get the new hire up to speed and performing well quickly.
By avoiding these common mistakes and implementing the solutions provided, your organization can improve your hiring process and find the right candidate for the job. Remember that finding the best candidate isn’t just about skills and experience but also personality, character, attitude, motivation, values, and work style. By creating a comprehensive benchmark and using assessments, standardized interviews, careful evaluation, and a customized onboarding approach, you can ensure that you’re hiring the right person for the job and the organization.