April 29, 2014

How Not To Hire The Best People For Your Company

By Paul Bieber

There are plenty of ways to not hire great candidates. In no specific order, here are the top ones I have run into. Your goal is to have as few of these practices as possible.

  • Offer lousy benefits.  Yep, you are saving money, but you will spend ten times more in rehiring and retraining due to high turnover.
  • Don’t worry about pre-employment drug testing.  You feel you’ll be able to figure out who the stoners are before your 90 day review period ends. 
  • Don’t check references.  After all, people only place their friends on the reference line anyway.  You should never just call the previous employer and ask for personnel; that would take too much time.
  • You desperately need a worker, so you hire the first one who walks in the door.  You know, there might not be another one coming!
  • It’s ok to hire someone who had five jobs in the last three years.  She told you how each company didn’t treat her well.
  • You hire an auto glass installer with his license suspended for a DWI.  After he finishes an install, he only has to drive the car from your intallation bay back to the customer parking lot.  Not much of a chance for an accident here.
  • It’s OK to hire the guy who took a call on his cell phone during your interview.  You look at it this way…he already has a cell phone so you don’t have to give him one of the company phones!
  • The guy you just interviewed said he could start right away, which is perfect for you.  He said he didn’t care if he gave his current employer any notice.
  • You are looking for a new receptionist for your office and turn away three different guys who apply for the position thinking you should only hire a pretty, young girl.  You will soon learn what the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has to say about that.
  • A really great installer comes through your door, willing to work off-the-books saving you a ton of money.  He can’t work on the books because of his pending workers’ comp claim against his former employer.
  • You are excited about hiring a new estimator.  He said he would bring six big jobs from his current employer.
  • “It’s OK to hire me,” he said, “My lawyer is sure I won’t be convicted and I can start work the day after the trial ends.”  So you hired him, but he never showed up.  Surprise!
  • A great candidate for your office accountant asks if you provide medical insurance for same-sex couples.  You tell her, “There is no f–ing way I would do that.”  And you were surprised when she turned down your job offer.
  •  He looked young, but when you asked how old he was, and he replied forty-three, you told him you were looking for a younger person for the job.  Now you know how he had all the work experience and customer knowledge.  Too bad he was that old.
  • This really good candidate came in; he had ten years experience and good references.  But he asked for three weeks vacation, like he had at his other job.  You offer three weeks vacation to folks with ten years at your place, but not to new hires.  Too bad, you lost another good one.  Keep sticking to your guns.
  • You were interviewing a top sales person from your competitor and you are about to close the deal.  You light a victory cigar, blowing smoke in the air.  She coughs and asks you if you would mind not smoking.  After you told her you could do what you want in your office, you were shocked that she turned down the job.  Was it something you said?
  • He looked good at your first interview, but he wasn’t really clear about the two-year gap in his work history.  He said he just decided to take some time off.  You were OK with that.  But every Wednesday he was late to work.  It seems he was seeing his Parole Officer.  Score one for not asking good questions.

Get the hint?  You can hire great people, take your time, do your homework and the biggest success factor is hiring someone who fits the culture of your company.