Avoid Costly Hiring Mistakes

As a follow-on to the “Top Five Ways to Derail Your Career & Life“, let’s take a look at the most significant mistakes from the employer perspective.

Over the last few days I’ve heard too many stories involving “the perfect hire” gone wrong!  The consequences can be as small as simply wasting your time to more disastrous as destroying staff moral or even a company gone “bust”!

Yes, the wrong hiring move can be significantly disastrous to the health of your business!

Later in this post you’ll find listed the most common hiring mistakes, but for now I’d like to focus on the most damaging one I’ve seen of late, especially when your business is in an early stage.

Hiring the wrong fit” can be anything from the wrong cultural fit which destroys your still fragile & developing company culture, to hiring the wrong profile all-together.

If you’re an organization with minimal resources & want to develop your customer acquisition, than the worst thing you can do is go out and hire a leading industry expert!

Think about it for a minute.. the guy or gal who was able to successfully sell in a mega-corporation will not be able to do the same when they are faced with limited resources. Don’t believe me? Just wait until they ask you for the necessary resources to help them develop the PowerPoint presentation they’ll need  to present your products or solutions! Worse yet, when they drive you crazy because they don’t even know how to set-up appointments or cold-call on the telephone without the “weight” & credibility of a recognized name or brand.

Likewise if your new sales person comes from an industry or practices with longer sales cycles than yours, then they won’t have the much needed sense of urgency you’ll require. And finally, if they’ve never previously been held accountable for the profitability of an operation, then you can expect that they will kill your cash-flow and or make consistently unprofitable deals.

Heard enough? As a side-note, if you’re hiring for a board position or considering your next investor you better think about the Social Contract you’re going to establish. You don’t want to find yourself on the wrong end of an amazing business gone bust because you’ve hired the wrong investment partner who will force your business into unnatural decisions.

Don’t make the mistake of thinking differently. Bringing on investment is  just a more complicated and drawn-out version of a hiring practice as well!

Here are a list of the 12 most common hiring mistakes:

  • Not pre-screening candidates
  • Failing to prepare the candidate
  • Failing to prepare the interviewers
  • Relying on the interview alone to evaluate a candidate
  • Using successful people as a model
  • Not looking for a good fit
  • Setting too many criteria
  • Doing nothing but talking during an interview
  • Evaluating “personality” vs job skills, experience & proven results
  • Failing to differentiate the critical job skills & required outcomes
  • Not researching the reasons people have failed in a previous job
  • Not doing a careful background reference check

For entrepreneurs, here are the Top 7 Hiring Mistakes for Startups by Brad Sugars of Entrepreneur.com

  • Hiring someone just because you know them
  • Hiring someone to “help them out”
  • Taking someone on as a partner because you can’t afford to hire him
  • Hiring someone to do a bit of everything
  • Top-down hiring vs. bottom-up hiring
  • Not knowing what job you want to hire for
  • Hiring for the job you hate

How many of these mistakes have you made over the course of your career? Worst yet, how many are you about to make? As a solution, the g.h.Smart TopGrading® process is one of the best I’ve ever seen with a +90% success rate!

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