Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, and while many of you will be focusing on what to get your loved one, or where to book dinner reservations, it’s important you show a little bit of love to your employees. Especially new ones.
Hiring the right talent provides an organization with a competitive advantage in the marketplace. And, chances are, if you are part of a thriving company you already know this. But, if things seem flat and less than stellar – your talent could be the issue.
In our experience, companies that know how and are committed to hiring the right talent are rare. Most companies struggle to find the right talent, and as a result lose a significant opportunity for growth.
According to a survey by Career Builder, more than 50% of hiring managers have felt the negative effects of a bad hire. This can be anything from morale problems to major financial losses. Some companies have reported taking a $50,000 loss on replacing a key person within the organization. In fact, the average cost of a bad hire can cost up to 30% of that person’s first year potential earnings.
Finding the right people for the job is incredibly tough. It’s tough because what prospects tell you is simply their own version of the truth. The human mind is quite a mystery, even for the best trained of us. Add in people’s personal motivations, family and financial situations, and especially egos, and you have quite a difficult course to navigate.
Chances are you’ve mistakenly hired the wrong person, but how often have you struggled to bring in the “big fish?” The person that could be a complete game changer for you. You aren’t alone. And this happens because hiring managers are too concerned with making sure the person has all the “qualifications” rather than the grit and passion to do a remarkable job.
How do you right the ship? For starters, you need to ditch the checklist for people. The analogy of hiring and dating is nothing new, so by putting it within the context of dating, would you bring a checklist of all your qualifications that must be met with you on a first date? Probably not.
When you interview someone, and more importantly, when you hire someone, you need to stop viewing it as a contract to do work. It’s not. What you’re doing is entering into a relationship with someone, and you need to impress him or her if you want the relationship to work. You need to romance them.
Get yourself in shape
Make sure your company is in top-notch shape to attract the best candidates. This includes having a clear story, a great brand, and a culture that you can speak to in a compelling way. Your story should not just tell what you do and how you do it, but WHY you do it.
Don’t falsely assume people just want to work at their company. It’s a bit of a brazen approach – and one that will get you in trouble. Hiring managers forget people have options, and the best candidates have a lot of them, and often from companies who have a clearly defined story and culture. Once your story is in place, take some time and make sure you know who you need to hire, what you want them to do, how you will measure him/her, and how you will compensate this person.
Make them fall in love
You’ve told your story, you know what you’re looking for, and you’ve done a great job qualifying the candidate. With this done, now is the time to put your sales hat on and sell the fact that your company is the BEST opportunity out there. Before making your offer, make sure the candidate is excited and will say yes. Just as people say no to marriage proposals, candidates turn down job opportunities all the time. The perfect person should love your company as much as you love them. Believe me, you don’t want a one-sided relationship. It is exactly what leads to a bad hire.
But how do you do this?
Remember, the little things are extremely important. Walking the candidate out, shaking their hand, and introducing them to others around the office goes a long way. After the fact – connect with them on LinkedIn, show them you’re invested. You Facebook friend a person after you meet them in a social setting, show the same courtesy in a professional manner.
Make your interactions positive. From the first interview to the last, and the offer to the negotiations, the candidate should always feel as though they’re making the right decision with you.
And, finally, show some love! Once you’re romanced your prospect into a hire, have your team send out a congratulatory email or make a phone call to welcome new members to the team. This will go a long way to making the person feel right at home.
There are no tricks to find the right person. It’s mostly about being a thoughtful and caring person throughout the process. Romance is important, people will fall in love with you if you have all the right things in place. Make the experience one to remember.
Now, I know Valentine’s Day is a few days away, but you don’t need a dozen roses and a box of chocolates to secure the best possible talent.
Misti Aaronson is the COO and a partner at entreQuest. She utilizes her talents and expertise from working with countless organizations to help businesses grow through expert talent acquisition, growth methodology and development of their teams.