The number one complaint among entrepreneurs is that they can’t find the right people.
That’s interesting because when you talk to the employees they usually have a similar complaint they can’t find that perfect boss.
So why is there so often a mismatch?
The problem is that we hire and apply on the wrong terms!
We hire for skills. We apply for money and job description. Or even worse, we settle for what is available at that moment. And like in any relationship or friendship, that is not likely a recipe for success.
Even when there is a match on skills and job related experience, that only tells half the story. When you are looking for a lasting match to ensure a meaningful contribution to an organization and personal development, it all comes down to sharing the same Core Values (link to website Core Values).
Prioritizing values over skills can feel counterintuitive. You feel prone to focus on the qualified person with the higher degree. But whereas most skills and experience can be developed, values are fairly consistent over time. And a mismatch in values can cost you a lot of money, head ache and time which can be prevented if you know what values to look for when you are hiring.
Here are 5 tips for hiring on Values
Hiring on values
1. Invest in a healthy culture & clear Core ValuesNew employees will always adapt to the existing culture, not to the intentions in a document. If your values are not represented in your current team, the new employee will most likely adapt to the existing situation instead of changing it. You need to invest in healthy value based culture first before you bring in new people!
2. Verbs in your values
Your Core Values need to be understood in terms of behavior by the employees as well as the people hiring them.
Only if you are clear on your expectations of the behavior in the workplace you associate with each value, can you do a targeted search for those behaviors while interviewing candidates.
What does integrity mean in the line of work you do? What attributes does an employee need to have to work with integrity in your company? How do you measure that?
3. Believe what you see not what you hear
The behavior that an applicant shows before, during or after a job interview tells you a lot about their true values. Most people have a good story, but small habits and unconscious behavior tell you more about their true values.
A candidate that smiles during the interview but is rude to your assistant on the telephone might not be as costumer orientated as she tells you.
The devil is in the details. Make notes of those little behaviors (positive and negative) on your score card.
4. Interview on values
Integrate questions on important value based behaviors as part of your standard interview.
Candidates that are aware of what is important to them when it comes to values, workplace conditions, fulfillment and meaningful development are less likely to be a mismatch. If their values are a good fit with yours of course.
Ask them what their value are and let them give practical examples of behaviors in the workplace that represent those values. Ask them what gave them fulfillment in previous jobs.
The right candidate usually has a clear understanding on what they need and offer to make a meaningful contribution to your company.
5. Test for Values (in tester)
Asking for values might not always get you a straight answer. A good candidate should have researched you and prepared their answers. Use examples of practical situation or case histories to test their values.
Test applicants case studies that provide a realistic moral dilemma they could come across. What does their answer tell you about their moral standards?
Or even better, ask if the candidates are willing to do a tester. Invite your top 2 to join you and your team on voluntary basis for a couple of hours. It tells you something about a candidate if they are not willing to make that investment.
On the day of the tester, look for the connection with the team, are they showing the values you want to see and are they the person they promised to be in the interview. Who shows the characteristics of the person you need to contribute to the culture you aspire.
Interested in finding out what your Core Values are?