As an industry recruiter, I have seen thousands of individuals get hired. By studying the recruiting and the hiring process I have found that the most suitable or the best person rarely got the job. Instead, the most attractive, affable, articulate, and also a reasonably qualified candidate, generally got the job.
First, I found that the best candidates don’t typically have the exact mix of skills and experience described by a traditional job description. Second, the best candidates usually don’t apply for mundane, traditional jobs. Top candidates are looking for challenges and other ancillary items.
Lastly, 99% of interviewers do not prepare for the interview with questions that get to the essence of the position, and they use their own pet criteria to judge the interviewee.
How to Hire a Great Person Statistically, 80% of candidates who are hired are hired by a “gut feeling.” This is not just in our industry, but it’s a problem that we all have. In addition, 70% of those hired based on a “gut feeling” are let go within 1.5 years. It’s time to break that pattern.
You can’t get who you want until you know what you need. Start by making checklists of what you are looking for in a prime candidate, the qualities you “must have” and those you “would like,” and use them to see who best meets your hiring criteria.
Create a ‘Must Have’ Checklist Using an optician as an example:
Skills, such as fitting and dispensing eyewear.
Certifications or licenses.
What kind of products do you sell? High-end, progressives, etc.
Other duties, such as answering the phone, bench work, knowledge of trunk-shows, inventory maintenance, product ordering.
Personality type or traits needed.
Create a ‘Would Like’ Checklist For example:
Can the candidate work 24/7 Saturdays?
Any specializations in low vision, contact lenses, or other skills that will help build your business?
Great work ethic, nice personality, ability to working directly with customers?
Based on these lists of “must haves” and “would likes,” develop the questions that will best shed light on the skills the right candidate will need.
Open-Ended Questions Keep It Real Begin with open-ended questions. Engage the candidate by asking questions that cannot be answered with a simple yes or no. For example:
How did you get involved in our industry?
What has been your favorite product to work with and why?
What person or event has influenced your career so far and how?
How would you describe your perfect day in your chosen career?
What successes have you had?
Finally, to get a feel for how the candidate will operate in the real world, ask for a presentation of selling a progressive or welcoming a new patient who has just walked in.
By doing a little more discovery of your potential new hire, you will peel away the layers of “façade” and move directly to the core of the candidate.