By Andrew Jennings, CCO – The New Year is a good time to both look forward and reflect. For Transcend, 2017 was a record year! We helped more people and more organizations realize their hidden potential. We focused on our vision of creating joy in the workplace which, ultimately, leads to higher performing teams and organizations through greater accountability and productivity. However, as with a lot of consulting companies, we begin 2018 unsure of what lies ahead. All we do know is that by staying true to our mission, and with the great people on our team, we will find success. Our team members are key to our success. We know how important it is to hire the right people.
So, since having the right people is a key part of the equation for any organization, how do you know you have the right people on your team? Leadership teams we work with often ask this question — particularly if they are about to commit to a significant investment to develop those people. It’s a great question, and one that has prompted us to evaluate the hiring and promotion processes used by many of our customers. Having the right people in the right jobs seems relatively straightforward. Yet, you’ve probably seen a high-performing employee promoted to a supervisory role with very little consideration as to whether the new job is a good fit. How do you either promote from within or hire the right people for your team?
Promote the Right People
For example, imagine that a high-performing engineer is promoted to manage a team. We see this happen a lot, as promotion to management is often the only way to progress. All too often, the engineer hates the job. He liked being an engineer. His team is frustrated as he avoids conflict and he has difficulty accepting input from others. Senior leadership gets frustrated and the once “star” engineer is now considered to be a failure — all because he was promoted into management.
So, what happened? First, the engineer was promoted into a position without the needed skills. As an engineer, he spent many years learning engineering, and had little to no training on managing others. Second, he was obviously blessed with a high IQ, but leadership is as much about EQ as IQ. Getting a team of people to work together is complicated, and it relies on more than one person having all the right answers.
Tools for Recruiting and Promoting
With this in mind, we work with organizations not just on creating leadership development programs, but also help them recruit and promote the best people for a given role. By introducing a pre-hire assessment to this process, such as PXT Select, hiring managers are given a data-based tool that assesses a candidate’s ability to perform the job expected of them. These tools are useful, but should never be more than 30% of the decision-making process. So, the next skill we help to develop is behavioral interview techniques. The purpose of behavioral interviewing is to dig deeper using carefully selected questions. These questions are developed to probe for the key attributes required for the position and weed out individuals who interview well, only to be unsuccessful once they are in the job.
Include These to Hire the Right People
A truly robust hiring process will have many elements. Here are some of the key ones we have identified:
- Training for hiring managers on how to successfully recruit high performers
- Clearly defined responsibilities for the role
- A job description that accurately conveys what is expected of candidates and the key skills and attributes required to be successful
- Resume screening process, including checking references
- Robust pre-hire assessment
- Behavioral interviews with key stakeholder
- Evaluation matrix to summarize scoring from pre-hire assessment and interviews
- Hiring team meeting to review results and gain any additional insight from the stakeholders
Whether you hire from outside or promote within, use a robust hiring and on-boarding process to significantly increase your likelihood of having the right people in the right roles. You can have confidence in your ability to hire the right people for your team. Then, when you invest in developing your people and culture — through coaching, mentoring and leadership development programs — that’s when the magic happens.
Make 2018 the year you unleash the magic in your organization!