How to Interview Well and Minimize Bad Hires

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It’s interesting that some candidates come off Impressive in the interview process then 90 days down the road their performance does not jibe with how they came off in the interview? Many individuals are very skilled at interviewing but turn out to be bad performers and visa/ versa.  I have been interviewing  candidates for sales positions recently  and have found some helpful tips to help vet the right candidates. The key here is to to sharpen your interviewing skills with the right interviewing preparation.The following are some of questions that can help you in your interview process.interview

  1. What did you initially find interesting about this job?

This question will help you determine if the the potential employee really cares about your company and understands the job. If the answer is detailed and reveals he has done research on your company and the role, you may have a good fit. If instead a candidate gives a generic answer that shows no comprehension of what your company does or what the position entails, he may just be desperate to find any job–and you don’t want to hire him.

2. Have you visited our website? What intrigued you about it?

Pay close attention to how detailed a candidate is when answering this question. If he seems caught off guard or stumbles through his responses without giving specifics about the website, chances are he probably didn’t do his research. If a candidate couldn’t bother to pull up your website once before the interview, chances are he’s not truly interested, detail oriented, or well prepared.

3. What salary do you need?

You’re not inviting a salary negotiation. You just want to know what salary the employee needs to cover his bills, what it takes to make salary the least of his concerns. This helps you take the focus away from money and lets him know that salary is not what’s important about what you have to offer–it’s the actual job that matters. Learn what the employee wants, and then direct the conversation back to the job itself.

4. How much money would you leave us for?

Present the candidate a hypothetical situation: He gets the job, with the exact salary he asked for, and loves everything about the company and position. Then, he gets a job offer from another company. How much money would he need to be offered–on top of the salary he requested–to take the other interview? This is hugely important, because a great candidate will say a job he loves is truly worth more than money (as long as it covers his expenses). A mediocre candidate will say double or triple the salary, and a bad candidate will say a dollar amount that’s less than double. You want to hire someone who doesn’t work just for money, someone for whom money isn’t a top priority if you take it off the table.

5. Has there ever been a time when your workday was over but your tasks weren’t finished? What did you do?

This question, will reveal if your candidate is truly a dedicated employee. A bad prospect will say he left the tasks until the next day; a great candidate will say the day isn’t done until the work is. You want someone who cares about helping your company, not someone who loses focus and skirts off at the very first opportunity.

6. How do you pick up the slack if a co-worker doesn’t finish a task?

Set up a scenario: Suppose the candidate is working on a project at 10 p.m. on a Friday and gets a call from an angry customer because someone on your team missed an important deadline. A great employee would take ownership of the task and do it himself. A mediocre one would write down the details and refer it to the co-worker, to be handled later. It’s important that an employee be able to take initiative–even if it means picking up the slack–for the good of the company.

  1. Can you solve this problem?

Set up a scenario: Suppose the candidate is working on a project at 10 p.m. on a Friday and gets a call from a customer who’s angry because someone on your team missed an important deadline. A great employee would take ownership of the task and do it himself. A mediocre one would write down the details and refer it to the co-worker, to be handled later. It’s important that an employee be able to take initiative–even if it means picking up the slack–for the good of the company.

Taking the time and thoughtful approach to interviewing your candidates will help you find the right personnel.

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How to Fix Bad Management that is Destroying your Employees Morale

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team build resolution

I have recently had the opportunity to interview many prospective sales people as candidates for entry level sales positions which has brought in candidates from many different industries and professions. I shockingly discovered through my process of interviewing that many of the applicants experienced bad management /employee relationships in their past jobs that resulted in resentful attitudes or quitting. In any case it seems that there are a lot of supervisors or managers that are not properly trained to manage other people leads to unsatisfactory production and low profit margins. team buils pymaid Sometimes companies have are forced to hire inexperienced management personnel or they do not have the time or resources to properly train them. So how do companies remedy a bad management situation? Well it obviously starts with reassessing and retraining of management and supervisory roles. Most times it is better to get an opinion and a fix from an unbiased outsource, this has two benefits in that the outside source can provide the unbiased judgment and it takes the burden off you and/or your company being perceived as the bad guy.

In addition to my role as a sales consultant I have been practicing leadership and team building training for several years. Team building exercises are a way of realigning, restoring team values and re-establishing effective communication channels not only between management and the teams but between teams (co-workers) as well. For Example I had the opportunity to facilitate a “Cultivating team a Atmosphereprogram for one the veterans associations management teams. They seemed to have interdepartmental issues – dissention, total communication breakdown with different management styles ECT. They were looking to quickly repair a breakdown and dysfunctional situation immediately.  As the participants came in the workshop room to choose their seating you could see the division among the personnel. “The Cultivating a Team Atmosphere workshop is a one day team building workshop with exercises and teachings to help overcome any obstacles that are inhibiting a productive and harmonious workplace.  The  participants were lead through various exercises that uncovered and resolved some very long standing issues. After the first break, one of the top managers who sat in on the leadership workshop took me aside and said that she was pleased that we had made some breakthroughs in a short period of time. It usually does not take more than a half a day to start uncovering and resolving communication issues and collaboration problems that can be easily remedied. Once you have people together and take them through a few exercises they realize and then are open to discuss their errors and problems at hand and be able to resolve them in a focused and non- threatening environment.