Most of us have heard the phrase ‘slow to hire, quick to fire’. However in my experience many of us don’t do either of these well. With regard to hiring there is often the rush to get someone to fill a role quickly. This is either so the outgoing person can provide a handover or just to ensure nothing falls through the cracks. With regard to firing there is the hesitation which stems from fear of litigation or just the fear of the difficult conversation.

While the reasons for not being slow to hire and quick to fire are completely valid, the impact on the organisation for having the wrong people is crippling.
Blasphemous Crack

In this post I will focus on hiring people as it is fresh in my mind. I have recently been in Malaysia working for a global company and helping them with their recruitment of a new team. Interviewing seems to be something people either love or hate. Fortunately for me, I love it. There is a personal challenge to be able to read a person and to decipher whether what they are saying aligns with their body language, their experience and their reputation.

Put quite simply – you cannot afford to get the recruitment process wrong. The best case scenario in a bad recruitment event is if you realise quickly after the person starts that you have made a mistake and you let them go. However you have already lost time, and more importantly bottom line profit by investing in the wrong person. Depending on the position you may have also impacted the organisations ability to deliver on its objectives. This can be from the elongated recruitment process (you have to start again) or by the wrong person creating issues in the existing team.

So how do you get it right? Here is what works well for me:

  • Don’t rush the process and ensure that you are 100% happy with your selection.
  • If interviewing is not your strength then find someone who is good at it to walk with you through the process.
  • Don’t only look at the candidates skills but their ‘fit’ with the team. Will they work well with the personalities that currently exist in the team?
  • Never accept the best from a bad bunch. Don’t start comparing the candidates until all the interviews are finished. Sometimes an average candidate can seem fantastic when compared to someone unsuitable.
  • Keep them talking. The more people talk the more you will get to know about them. Often if people are not genuine then they cannot keep up the front for the length of an interview.
  • Seek feedback from others. I would always ask our receptionist what they thought of the candidate. It’s amazing the insights that they might be able to provide you about their first impressions. It’s unlikely the candidate is expecting the interview to start at reception so you are likely to find out what they are really like.

When you get recruitment right the results for your team and your organisation can be amazing!

Justin Savaille


Management PT