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Beware Of The Spell Of First Impressions…

Beware Of The Spell Of First Impressions…

August 29th, 2013

tonyArticleYou may have heard this from me before, but it is so important that it is worth repeating from time to time.

Hiring the right candidate is too important to leave to chance. The Problem: If you like a candidate after just meeting them, you tend to over emphasize their positives and minimize their negatives – otherwise known as the “halo effect”.  On the other hand if you do not like a candidate, you tend to over emphasize their weaknesses.

It’s impossible to accurately measure a candidate’s fit for a position when you are under the “spell of first impressions”.

It usually takes getting past the first 30 minutes of an interview to make an objective assessment. Yes this is harder than it sounds, so here are some suggestions to help you:

Minimizing Perception-Oriented Hiring Mistakes:

1)      Conduct initial phone interviews. Schedule a 30-minute phone interview focused on their related major accomplishments before an onsite interview. This will minimize the impact of first impressions.

2)      Assign your interview team members specific areas to focus on during the interview. Do not give anyone on the interview team a full yes or no vote. Rather come up with a candidate scorecard listing all the competencies and factors needed for someone to be successful in the position.  Each interviewer is to be given only a few of these to focus on. During the formal post interview debrief meeting each interview will be required to discuss how they came up with their ranking on just those factors. This will allow the whole team to make a more in depth candidate assessment.

3)      If you are short on time for in-person interviews, do not squeeze several short interviews into the schedule. Conduct a panel interview instead. A recipe for making a wrong hiring decision is to have 4-6 people each spend only 30 minutes with a candidate then add up their yes and no votes. Rather schedule a 60-90 minute panel interview with 2-3 people. This will take less time in total and force the objectivity.

4)      Wait 30 minutes. Before making a hiring decision after an interview, wait 30 minutes before making the yes/no decision.

5)      Be more suspicious with candidates you like. Most interviewers go into sales mode with a candidate they like early in the interview process. They ask softball type questions, and tend to minimize or ignore negatives about the candidate’s fit for the position. To help avoid that natural tendency, make yourself ask tougher questions, digging for confirmation of the person’s job related past accomplishments.

6)      Treat “rough” candidates as though they were a consultant. Some of the better candidates are terrible interviewers for a host of reasons. Perhaps their skills are such that they are invited to join a company more than being interviewed. You want someone whose expertise is in doing a job — not getting one. To help ensure an objective assessment, assume these candidates are great, and interview them as if they were expert consultants. After the first 30 minutes you may find out how good they really are.

7)      Ignore decisions not back up by facts. During the debrief meeting, ignore candidate assessments that include these words: like, think, feel, dislike, bad fit, too soft, too aggressive, and anything about the candidate’s personality (good or bad). These are all indications the candidate was interviewed through a preconception filter.

8)      Soft skills are important, but it is better to assess those at the end of the interview when the interviewer is more objective. So measure first impressions at the end of the interview.

Drop me a line to let me know your thoughts and experiences about this.

Let me know if there is anything I can do to help you in any way.

Kindest Regards,

 

Tony Bengtson, SPHR
Precision Recruiting, Inc.
CTRN Founder and President
Coors Corporate Gold Supplier Award Recipient
(303) 627-9189

 

 

 

Posted in Advice, Recruiting

Subject Line: Top 10 HR Technology Trends For 2014

Subject Line: Top 10 HR Technology Trends For 2014

August 9th, 2013 

tonyArticleHere is an interesting article in Forbes magazine I thought I would share with you to get your thoughts.

Here are some of my thoughts:

In bullet #2. The article states Gamification is here to stay especially with Millenials (Gen-Y).  Isn’t that just a fancy name for providing recognition and identifying a prize for successfully completing an important project?

Bullet #3 states that integrated social media is better for communication and collaboration:

In my opinion this is where things are going and you better accept this.  I talk about this with the

Generation Y or Millenial generation in my ebook “7 Killer Mistakes that Keep Top Performers from Ever Joining Your Company”

In fact I am working with a company that is creating new business software for CIOs that is built on a collaboration platform taking advantage of the FaceBook experience for collaborative decision making and to document stakeholder information that was used in the decision making process for accountability purposes down the road.

In talking to CIOs they used to fight BYOD (Bring Your Own Device). This when employees bring their own smartphones, Ipads, etc. to work and prefer to use them if the company does not issue them one.  Most CIOs now have accepted this as a way of life and have adapted their policies and IT infrastructure to deal with it.  HR must do the same.

Bullet #4. states the importance of Virtualization of the workplace: How long have we been talking about telecommuting in HR?  How many companies are still fighting this? Companies on the coast have been doing this for years because they have to do this to obtain the top talent they need. I know people working out of their homes that are employees of Google reporting to bosses in California. This is becoming a big deal in attracting Top Talent to your company. The smart companies find a way to make this work and are therefore getting the Top Talent they need to move their companies forward.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/sap/2013/08/01/top-10-hr-technology-trends-for-2014/?_sm_au_=iVVjJ60n5TNW5jQM

Kindest Regards,

 

Tony Bengtson, SPHR
Precision Recruiting, Inc.
CTRN Founder and President
Coors Corporate Gold Supplier Award Recipient
(303) 627-9189

 

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized

My favorite core interview questions

My favorite core interview questions:

July 30th, 2013

  1. tonyArticleWhat was it about this position that attracted you to want to find out more?
  2. What are you looking for in your next employment opportunity that you may not be getting in your current one?
  3. Can you describe your most significant accomplishment while at____?
  4. How would you solve this problem?
  5. What would your former boss at “ABC company” tell me about you when I call to do the reference check?
  6. Is there anything in your past that we should talk about now that may come up in background and reference checks?

I thought I would share with you my favorite core candidate interview questions.  I have used these for decades to help me quickly assess “the fit” of candidates I talk to on a daily basis. Of course there are additional candidate questions tailored specifically to  each position’s core essential factors, but these are the ones I like to ask all the time.  Notice that I did not mention the word “job” in my questions.  Clients only hire me to find them Top Performers, and Top Performers do not change jobs for another job, but rather for better career choice and opportunities.

The first two questions are to find out what the candidate’s “hot buttons” are. I will use that information (if possible) when extending an offer to remind them how the opportunity I have will get them what they currently do not have and why they should take it.

Questions three and four really provide you with more insight into the candidate’s abilities and capabilities.

Questions five and six are to help flush out the “bad apples.”  This will save you and your team valuable time and awkward embarrassment.

Let me know what you think of these questions.  Which ones are your favorites when you conduct interviews?

Remember, I am here to help in any way I can.

Free eBook: “7 Killer Mistakes Stopping Top Performers From Ever Joining Your Company”
http://bit.ly/X1TsAE

Kindest Regards,

 

Tony Bengtson, SPHR
Precision Recruiting, Inc. www.pri.jobs
CTRN Founder and President
Coors Corporate Gold Supplier Award Recipient
(303) 627-9189

 

Posted in Advice, Recruiting