Working on a Dream




Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Preventive Medicine: How to Avoid Hiring Terrible Employees

Preventive Medicine

Remember when you were a kid and started developing a cough? If your mom was like my mom, that meant spoonfuls of nasty liquid medicine. I always remember begging dad to buy the “purple stuff” that tasted just like grape … or at least it was supposed to. Although I resisted most of the time, mom was quick to administer the medicine ASAP so to prevent further illness. Besides, everyone knew I wasn’t missing school unless my leg was gangrene.

It was wise Ben Franklin that once declared, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Preventive medicine can be practiced just about anywhere; however, today I will focus on the workplace, specifically in regards to hiring people. People often ask for advice when it comes to dealing with passion-less, lazy workers.
“How do I motivate John?”
“Why is Mary always performing below expectations?”

Recently it dawned on me that, generally speaking, the problem might not be in the workplace per se, but with the individual themself. If this discovery is made, then you have to break the bad news to the manager that the trouble they are experiencing is due to their lack of practicing preventative medicine. Hiring the right person will spare you a lot of painful and costly problems in your workplace. See, the preventative medicine is the job interview process whereby you see the problem before you obligate yourself to the person. Gregg Lederman, author of “Achieve Brand Integrity” agrees: “The wrong people are your company’s greatest catastrophe. These are the individuals who should never have been hired in the first place. They have drained training resources and been difficult to work with, leading to decreased morale and lower productivity. In many cases, these poor performers have found ways to directly or indirectly deter customer loyalty all the while exhausting your payroll … Your mediocre people are your company’s greatest drain on overall resources and infest your work culture with mediocrity while keeping your organization from reaching its desired results.”

What should you do?
Beef up your interview system with Grade-A steroids.
Check out these 10 helpful tips below suggested by Lee Cockerell, author of Creating Magic:
1) Define beforehand the qualities needed for the job / Describe the job completely.
2) Do not hire a clone of yourself.
3) Involved a team in the hiring process.
4) Select by talent, not resume.
5) Look for a good fit into your corporate culture.
6) Promote within (when you can).
7) Hire people that are smarter than you.
8) Check out the candidates personally in their previous environment. (If possible)
9) Have the candidate(s) demonstrate their expertise. (Real time interviews)
10) Select the best candidate –not just the best one available.

The hiring process is your preventive medicine. By focusing more on the hiring procedure you stack the deck in your favor. Look, the expectations are not for you to become a genie with a crystal ball, mistakes are bound to occur when hiring. The point is that you can take some control by being mindful ahead of time. So take your medicine by the spoonful early and often! By doing so, you will save yourself from the sneezes, coughs, and headaches that will spread throughout your workplace like a virus.

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