Any business, from Google to the hot dog cart guy, is defined by the people working in it. No matter how slick or strict your processes are, the people using them will adapt and (hopefully) improve them in their own image.
It stands to reason, then, that you need the best people. You need people who won’t let any inefficiency escape without attacking it and rooting it out. You need an A-Team for Process Improvement. And that, of course, is the rub.
So how do you hire the people to get you there? In another article we gave you some unique interview questions to try. Now, here are some outside-the-box tips to help get you there…
1) Listen to the People You Have
If you’re the Owner, I have some bad news for you. Statistically speaking, you probably make pretty terrible hiring decisions.
You know what you need more than anything else. You also know how expensive it is every day that position isn’t filled. So, you look for the right stuff in the wrong people. You don’t think you do, but you do. You might ask leading questions or look for nuggets you only think are there. In short, it’s hard for an Owner to make a disinterested decision.
If you want to be part of the interviews, have someone there with you whose opinion you genuinely trust. Create a script and stick to it, and keep those questions the same for everyone. Also, never hire without sleeping on it first.
2) Seek the Right Attributes
If you haven’t heard of the KASH Box, look it up. Read our KASH box article for the details, but here’s the summary. You hire on 4 qualities:
- K – knowledge. What they know coming in.
- A – attitude. Their perspective on life.
- S – skills. What they can do coming in.
- H – habits. How they live their lives.
K and S are easy to test, ask questions about, and hire on. It’s appealing to be able to bring a front-end loader operator on day 1 and they’re rocking. And for many jobs – the jobs that require specific and detailed day 1 skill sets, K and S are key.
A and H are harder to unearth. It’s more than their words, it’s also how they respond to your questions.
You’re not trying to measure how well they’ll perform a process anymore. You’re measuring what they will do when they see a potential improvement for the process. Will they let it slide and just keep doing their job, or will they tackle it, mentally wrestle with it, and come to you with a potential fix?
If you want someone to be good at their job on day 1, hire for Skills and Knowledge. If you want them to grow into their job over time, and help you grow your business with you as they get to know the inner workings better, hire for Attitude and Habits.
Ultimately, you can train any skill you need. But you can’t train habits, nor can you train attitude.
Remember that every new hire has the potential to be with you for a long time—for better or worse. The right people aren’t just capable. They care about being a real part of your business’ success.