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No More Bad Hires: Business Expert Shares Tips to ‘Hire With Purpose’

Make the Right HireEarlier today, while you might’ve been busy vowing never to eat again, voting for your favorite Muppet (Swedish Chef, anyone?), or shopping for that very special Jaleel White fan in your life… Nationally recognized small business expert, speaker and author Jay Goltz was discussing small business hiring trends and best practices for a free webinar titled Hire With Purpose.

In case you were busy with any of the aforementioned activities – or simply want to hear it again – lucky for you, we’ve got two ways to make sure you don’t miss out on the webinar’s great content: Simply download a recording of Hire With Purpose here or keep reading to check out some of Jay’s best sound bytes on the following topics:

On why hiring the right people is crucial…

  • “If you want to have a great company, you can’t do so without great people.” Seventy-five percent of management is hiring the right people in the first place, Goltz says. Unfortunately, most small businesses don’t have a hiring protocol, which can be dangerous, when, according to Goltz’s estimates, only 1 out of 10 applicants will be a great hire.
  • “People might forgive bad service, but not bad attitude.” Case in point for why you need to have great employees – they are the face of your business. You can’t always account for things going smoothly in the world, but when you have great people in place to deal gracefully with occasional mishaps, your business will be all the better for it.

On three things to do now to hire great employees…

  • “Create a compelling ad.” “We want an ad so compelling that makes someone say, ‘That seems like a cool company. I want to check that out.” Great job ads include things like, “You’ll love our culture,” “Our people are valued,” and “our environment is open and challenging with plenty of freedom.” Talk to your current employees to see what they love about working at your company and include that. “You want to inspire people to apply to your company.”
  • “Conduct great interviews – or find someone who can.”Ironically, Goltz says, the very qualities that make people great entrepreneurs – a love of talking, the desire to see the best in people – make them terrible interviewers. They often do not dig deep enough to see why someone might not be a good employee. Fortunately, there’s likely someone at your organization who has a talent for the craft and can dig deep to find great employees. A key to conducting great interviews is to ask better questions. Below are some of Goltz’s personal favorites, the answers to which offer insights into a candidate’s personality, work ethic and drive:
    •  “Why did you leave your last job?”
    • “How did you handle a difficult situation at your last job?”
    • “If you were in charge of your last company, what would you change?”
  • “Check references. Always.” “Not only is reference-checking one of most important things you can do as part of the hiring process, but it’s also one of most unused resources out there,” Goltz says. Hiring someone without checking references is “like playing with fire.” When checking references, listen for the red flags. Great candidates’ references are often forthcoming with information and compliments; not-so-great candidates, however, have references who are less willing to talk (whether because they don’t want to be unkind or perhaps fear legal ramifications, etc.).  Whatever you do, however, do NOT skip this step, Goltz says. “Trust me, it’s better to make 20 reference calls to guarantee right employee than deal with nightmare of dealing with a bad employee.”

On the crucial first day…

  • “Make sure employees walk away from their first day knowing they made the right decision.” Few things are as important to keeping new employees around as giving them a great first day on the job. To ensure this, to the following three things:  Introduce them to everyone they’ll work with; Have their work area prepared for them ahead of time; and have someone take them out to lunch (or take them yourself!)

On one final thought….

  • “If you don’t love them, don’t hire them.” I can think of lots of people we weren’t sure about who didn’t work out. If you put a little more time into the front end of hiring, your life will change dramatically. You’ll have less grief in the long run if you hire people you love during the interview process and get great references. Don’t lower your standards.

Did you hear the webinar? What did you think?

Related links:

Hire With Purpose: Q&A With Small Business Expert Jay Goltz

From Q&A to A: The Hiring Manager’s Complete Interviewing Guide

Mary Lorenz

About Mary Lorenz

Mary is a copywriter for CareerBuilder, specializing in B2B marketing and corporate recruiting best practices and social media. In addition to creating copy for corporate advertising and marketing campaigns, she researches and writes about employee attraction, engagement and retention. Whenever possible, she makes references to pop culture. Sometimes, those references are even relevant. A New Orleans native, Mary now lives in Chicago, right down the street from the best sushi place in the city. It's awesome.
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