Research shows that if you use an interview as your main decider, you have only a 14% chance that the person you choose will perform well in the role! Today’s article by Dr Dan Harrison explores why.
Given that we continue to use interviews, it’s in our interests to make them as effective as possible. Our webinar TOMORROW will show you how! Book your place today: https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/917745616
In the past, interviews have been used as the primary means assess attitude, motivation, and job behaviour. However, even if interviewers are extremely intuitive, there are many reasons why accurately assessing job behaviour with a normal interview process is nearly impossible.
1. The interviewee aims to tell the interviewer what he/she thinks will be viewed as the best response. The interviewer aims to determine how much of what the person is saying reflects genuine attitudes and behaviour and how much is related to just trying to get the job. This in itself is extremely difficult to resolve in the short period of the interview.
2. Interviewers are biased. Research clearly shows that interviewers routinely give favorable responses to people who are similar to themselves, and less favorable responses to people who are different from themselves. In the end, the result is very likely to come down to how well the interviewer likes the candidate rather than how well the candidate fits the behavioural requirements of the job.
3. Some people are skillful at being interviewed. However, being skillful at an interview usually does not relate to job success and therefore it often confuses the interviewer into thinking that such skillfulness will relate to job success.
4. Interviewers do not have access to a real behavioural success formula. There are dozens of behavioural factors that either promote success or inhibit success for any one job. Interviewers rarely have access to a job formula that identifies the behavioural success factors, weights the success factors against each other. And formulates how different levels of these success factors impact job performance
5. Even if the interviewer has access to such a formula, the interviewer would need to accurately assess specific levels of each applicant’s behaviour for each of the job success factors.
Many interviewers claim insights into the personality of applicants and certainly some interviewers are quite perceptive. However, predicting job success is an entirely different matter. It is not sufficient to perceive a particular quality of a person. Rather, the interviewer must be able to accurately assess the magnitude of each of dozens of qualities in relationship to a complex formula of behavioural requirements for a particular job. This is nearly an impossible task without the aid of significant research and tools.
Assessment research shows that interviewing has a moderate ability to predict job success. However, this doesn’t mean that interviewers can predict job behaviour. The moderate ability to predict job success comes as a result of exploring the candidate’s resume, previous experience, education, and job knowledge rather than the interviewer’s ability to predict job behaviour.
When interviewing job candidates, we all have favourite questions we always like to ask. The effectiveness of some of these questions is questionable, to say the least.
As candidates, I’m sure we’ve all heard some screamers. I thought asking a person what car they drive was pretty poor, until someone told me they’d been asked “If you were a car, what sort of car would you be?”. This question would give a good indication of the person’s imaginative powers, but little or no information about their ability to do the job.
Another favourite is “Where do you want to be in five years’ time?”. If you have heard that one before (who hasn’t?) you can imagine how common it is and how easy for a candidate to prepare an impressive answer for when you ask them!
The ability to do the job, along with attitude, are the key things you’re looking for in your intervew questions. Any question that does not give you more information on ability or attitude is a distraction from the main game and may even land you in hot water.
Here are some examples of interview questions which may be asked with the best of intentions but may be inappropriate:
1. Where did you grow up?
2. How old are your children?
3. When did you finish high school?
4. What does your wife/husband do for a living?
5. How long do you plan to work before you retire?
If you have asked any of these, or similar, questions in the past, my advice is to consider a new approach to how you interview. We will be talking about the traps to avoid in our next webinar on 25 August. Register here to learn more: https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/917745616
If your chances of being hired or promoted – or winning a new client – depended 20% on your qualifications and 80% on your reputation, would you need to change your behaviour?
I’m sure for most readers, the answer is ‘no’ because you are already aware of how important your reputation is to your success.
In this post we’re going to look at some of the things, beyond honesty, that contribute to a good reputation. If you’d like to know more about how to get more insights into a person’s reputation, read this post.
These are our top five factors contributing to a high personal approval rating:
1. Valuing others for the relationships you have with them, not just for what you think they can do for you.
2. Positive interactions and communication with peers, managers, suppliers, clients and competitors.
3. Congruence or acting in ways that are consistent with your values and the values of your organisation. This is ‘walking the talk’.
4. Delivery – doing what you said you’d do, even if it will cost you. Corollary: Don’t promise what you can’t deliver.
5. Consistency in how you act in the full range of situations you encouner in life and business. People like to extrapolate from how they’ve seen you behave in one instance to how you will approach other situations and if you’re not consistent you’ll cause confusion, which can be damaging for you.
As an employee, consultant or adviser, be aware of how all these factors contribute to your reputation and the reputation of your organisation.
As a manager, you could use these five factors as a checklist when assessing candidates for employment or promotion, as you go through your interviews, reference checking and staff development processes. Lack of clarity on any one of these factors is a signal that you may need to do some more research before making your decision.
Remember “You can’t build your reputation on what you’re going to do.” (Henry Ford)
Did you know you can be more effective, for longer periods, if you pay more attention to what you’re doing?
(We covered the possibility of doing less to achieve more in an earlier post on multi-tasking.)
Driving a manual car recently after many years of driving automatics – and the extra concentration that required to get anywhere – started me thinking about the things we do on auto-pilot, without really being ‘present’. At work, this can mean we repeatedly act – or react – out of habit in ways that may be counterproductive, even causing stress for ourselves in the process.
We all know we have a choice about our reactions to everyday situations, so how do we switch off the default mode and become more mindful in the everyday?
Just as driving a manual car required me to concentrate more on what I was doing, anything you do different from your normal routine will engage your brain more in whatever it is you’re doing. For example, you could take a different route, or mode of transport, to get to the office. Or try out a new response when you answer the phone.
It is possible to get through a day without checking your emails every 2 minutes! (I have tried it…) Instead, the experts recommend a set time to check your emails, twice a day, say 10am and 4pm. By starting your day on your most important project, instead of being driven by what’s in your inbox, you’ll feel more in control of your work with a greater sense of achievement.
As an internet addict myself, I’ve found the use of a program the shuts of internet access for a predetermined period is very effective for increasing focus!
If you find yourself reacting with annoyance or frustration when confronted by certain people or situations, it’s time to do something about it! Instead of putting off confronting the issue and causing yourself ongoing tension, focus on how much better (and more effective) you’ll feel once you don’t have to worry about it anymore.
Of course, one solution may be for you to consciously change your reaction so that you no longer waste time on an unproductive emotion!
Preparing for the ‘Recruitment and Selection Essentials’ workshop later this week started me thinking about the shortcuts we sometimes take when recruiting new staff.
Often this is because we’re in such a desperate hurry to get somebody (anybody?) onboard that we are willing to take a risk or two.
Do have a systematic way to compare candidates in terms of the essential and desirable criteria for the role. This will save you having to plough through each resume to find vital information in the early stages and make it easier to pick your top candidate(s).
Don’t brief a recruitment agency or write an advertisement until you know exactly what you’re looking for. Clarity on this one point will save you time and money – every time.
Do conduct phone interviews in the first instance. This is becoming more common and can save both you and your candidates a lot of time. By having a few ‘make or break’ questions, you may find you have reduced the number of people to be interviewed face-to-face.
Don’t employ anyone without first checking their credentials. You may be aware of a case before the NSW Supreme Court. The investment manager for Astarra Funds Management, Shawn Richards, claimed to have both a degree and experience when he had neither. If you don’t check, will your reputation survive a fraudulent employee?
Do always check the references given to you by candidates, even if it takes some time and trouble.
Don’t feel you have to stick to checking just the referees you have been given. Recent supervisors and peers may be able to provide you with more information.
Do spread your net to other people in the industry who might know the candidate and ask them for their feedback. Your industry contacts can also save you time in identifying likely candidates.
Do find out as much as you can about the potential employee through pre-employment assessments and checks.
Implementing these simple guidelines will save you time (and money) in the long run. More importantly, they will reduce the substantial risks to your business and reputation of employing an unsuitable, unqualified or unreliable staff member.
Those who attended our webinar ‘How to Make Your Good Team Great’ last week already know about our ‘Team Health Check’. (And with our special offer to webinar participants, their requests are coming in fast!) The Team Health Check has been designed to give you a snapshot of how things are in your team. This is just the beginning of a process that will take your team to greater effectiveness. You will get:
Running a small business, communication within the team is just as important as it is within a business of hundreds of staff.
Whilst we have many mechanisms for communicating on a regular basis, I felt it important to allow some anonymous feedback within the team, even for me. I asked Susan Rochester to co-ordinate the process to ensure that we had an impartial and confidential collation of the results.
Susan responded quickly with a summary that allowed me to provide meaningful feedback to all of the team. Our Practice Manager was able to provide feedback for the whole team and also further understand the personalities within the team.
This made the management process easier for myself and the whole team. Each member of the team gained insights into their own behaviours and effectiveness within the team. The result has been a greater understanding of each other within the team.
I am looking forward to doing it again soon and expect to do so at least once per year. I recommend using Susan to assist you in your business in this way.
Bernard FehonCFP™ | Principal Financial Planner | Tactical Solutions
Often when we think a team isn’t as productive as it could be, our first reaction is to spend some money on team-building exercises, often off-site. In my experience, your typical team-buildling challenge or social activity is great for getting out of the office and having some fun together…
If you’re looking for a way to get your team to work more productively together, look for solutions that:
Do you have ideas for effective and lasting team-building? Please share your insights by adding a comment below.
This question came to mind last weekend, when I had the good fortune to attend ‘Wintersong 2010’ an annual choral workshop held in the Blue Mountains. The weekend revolved around learning and performing diverse works arranged for choir – with 90 other singers from all over the country.
Composer and musician, Paul Jarman led us in an amazing workshop. In around an hour, we composed and performed a choral work in 7 parts. My first response when this was suggested was ‘this will never work’. To my amazement, it worked brilliantly!
I think we were working as a team at that point. (And arguably for the rest of the weekend, in producing some incredible sounds.)
For this project we were a team and not just a group because we had:
1. A leader who was very skilled and experienced;
2. An intention to create something of quality;
3. Goodwill and a desire to cooperate;
4. Diverse ideas and abilities; and
5. A specific goal, with a defined timeframe.
What do you think?
Do these things make a team? Or am I getting carried away with the analogy?
Please post your comments below.
Have you booked in for our webinar ‘How to Make Your Good Team Great’ on 7 July at 12 noon AEST? Click to register.
In Australia, we have had a recent change of Prime Minister. Since then, I’ve been reflecting on what we can learn from these events in terms of having effective teams.
1. People want to be included in decisions that will affect them. The mining industry is just one example. The new PM, Julia Gillard, has recognised this, saying “I seek to work inclusively. I seek to bounce ideas around. I seek to get peoples’ views.”
2. It’s important to have a strong leader but risky to invest too heavily in believing their success will be the same as the team’s success.
3. Individual communication skills, behavioural traits and personal style are always going to be important for the collective success of the team because they will influence outsiders’ perception of the team.
4. When it’s time to make a change, acting quickly and decisively will allow you to get on with the task at hand without the distraction of uncertainty and rumours.
Perhaps you have some examples of your own? Please share your insights by adding a comment below.
My car currently has a small niggling problem that’s not serious, but I know I should do something about it. Perhaps you’ve had a similar experience, with a car, computer or other technology?
Have you ever had the same sort of nagging thoughts about your team at work? Things are running smoothly, but you know they could probably be even better if you took the time to look under the bonnet and do some team maintenance.
You could be avoiding taking any action for one of the following reasons:
Sound familiar? So why should you take time out to work on your team?
Teams that have been selected, trained and coached according to the strengths of the individual team members will always out-perform any teams composed and managed simply along functional lines.
Teams outshine their competition when they –
Any team building activity that contributes to better teamwork will focus on how these high performance team characteristics are applied in the workplace. For example, read the case study of one team development process.
TIP: Know how to get the best performance from your team with practical and meaningful team development. Register for our webinar on 7 July at 12 noon (AEST).