How to Hire the Right People

My working career has spanned over a period of over half my life, 21 years actually.  During that time I was responsible for many hires, if I had to guess I would say I have hired over 100 people throughout my career.

Unfortunately I’ve also had to Fire some of those people too. Which is why today I am going to touch on a topic that can make or break any business. As a business owner I am a firm believer that your staff is what makes a company great. For example without my Team our company would be nothing.

Doesn’t matter how great of a business owner you are, the fact of the matter is, if you don’t have the right team that you trust enough to execute your strategies; then your business will never be in the position to effectively grow into what you envision it to be.

So here are some strategies to find the right people

1. Hire on attitudes.  Almost every job that I have had the companies have always hired based on experience. During the interview they always ask me “How long have you been in sales/management?” “ Do you have experience in X?” “What about Y?”

Don’t get me wrong experience is a big thing, but when I had my restaurant for example, we used to hire the chefs and waitresses based on the experience they had. As time passed by I realized that was a mistake, experienced people are set in their ways. When you try to get them to do it our way, they tend to sometimes regress to how they used to do it.  A lot of the time “Their” way is usually the wrong way. I even had one chef that kept making our dishes with his own ingredients! We were voted best Restaurant in Town Because of our Recipes, don’t change them! I am sure you guessed that since he wouldn’t change he was later let go.

So instead of hiring solely based on experience we changed paths and focused more on attitudes.  It is easier to train someone with less experience and the right attitude, rather than training the person that has tons of experience but is stuck in their ways and lazy to boot.

Here are a couple of examples for you sports fans:

Alex Burrows of the Vancouver Canucks, never drafted and bounced around from minor league to minor league; he was never projected by any scouts to “Make It”. But through hard work, belief, determination and a never say die attitude he became one of the best forwards in the NHL today. He even took a pay cut in order to make the team more financially sound to try to Win it All.

The now defunct Vancouver Grizzlies originally drafted Steve Francis, because the team was really bad and had the Second Overall Pick. He heard horror stories about the Vancouver Weather and Taxes he refused to report to the team. He was later traded and over his career from 1999 – 2008 he was traded 4 times his final year a little bit of poetic justice was served, the former Grizzlies team relocated to Memphis acquired him and later waived his contract ending his career in the NBA.

2. Create the right ad. Hiring is very similar to Advertising you need the right people to respond so you can have the right candidates to choose from. How do you do that? Make sure you include the following things:

Competitive Salary should be at least industry standard maybe even a little bit more. If your unsure check out PayScale.com or GlassDoor.com

Also describe the job in the ad and what the benefits at your company. Paid Vacations, great benefits even employee contests are reasons why people choose to work for one company over another. In addition any awards your company has won or any community activities your involved in, candidates need to know you are a reputable company that will last. They usually want to find a place they can hang their hat for a while.

3. Referrals. Although I have had my fair share of bad hires by referrals most people will not send you a person that will make themselves look bad.  Especially if they currently work for you, on top of that, the retention rate after 2 years is at 45% for referrals. Not only that you spend less time looking and no money advertising.

Obviously that is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to hiring. Maybe one day I will do a set of interview questions for everyone. What is your experience with hiring, would you hire based on attitude or you still think experience is the best way to go. Let us know your thoughts by commenting below or on Facebook and Twitter.