Friday, March 25, 2011

Hiring & The Potter's Wheel Principles in Action

I was going to post another excerpt from my book, Hiring and the Potter's Wheel: Turning Your Staff Into a Work of Art.

Instead I'd like to give you a glimpse into how one business put the principles of the book into action.

The first principle of the book is to identify the right raw ingredients, the inherent traits that someone must already bring to the table to be successful in the role for which he or she is hired. I call these the non-teachable traits.

This business wanted to hire a Sales Position. The number one non-teachable trait for the perfect candidate must be his or her ability to communicate simple ideas effectively.

So in the interview process they put together an exercise to see how well a candidate can communicate a simple idea. They gave the candidate a picture that had three shapes in it, a rectangle, a triangle, and a circle. Then they asked the candidate to describe the shapes to another person who had to then draw those shapes.

Seems like a simple task, right?

The results were more than telling. The candidate struggled mightily with this activity. The communication skills simply weren't there. The interviewer commented to me that he was pretty sold on the candidate up until this activity. The candidate had experience and education and passed the eyeball test. But when it came down to doing the one thing he would have to do consistently day in and day out, he didn't have the skill.

By knowing exactly what traits and skills the perfect candidate needs and focusing their interview on determining if the candidate has those traits, they were able to avoid one of the most costly mistakes any small business can make, hiring the wrong person.

If you would like to avoid making this costly mistake in your hiring and training, buy the book and follow the process. It's simple, intuitive, and pays off immediately.

-Phil

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