In Good to Great, author Jim Collins says the first job of management is to “get the right people on the bus, get the right people into the right seats on the bus, and then get the wrong people off the bus.”
Historically talent departments have tended to focus on number of requisitions processed and reducing time-to-fill, effectively stressing efficiency over effectiveness. Now, however, there is a shift of focus from quantity to quality, largely because of:
Winning the war for talent means rethinking the recruitment process and this begins with getting the right people on board in the first place. We simply can no longer afford to make costly hiring mistakes.
Begin by thinking through the job carefully, along with the attributes, skills and competencies of the person you want to see in the role. Identify the specific measurable goals and outcomes you wish the employee to achieve. Think about your company culture and what kind of people will work well with your existing team and contribute to the atmosphere you want in your business. Although you want smart ambitious people, successful recruiting is not about high performance in isolation. Misfit employees tend to have a huge impact on company morale and visions. If you advertise, be very clear about what the role entails and what type of person you are looking for: skills and competencies as well as personal attributes and characteristics. Be sure to look internally as well and to broadcast throughout all available networks.
Once you have a thorough job description and a solid idea of what the new hire should look like, utilize the law of three:
Throughout the interview process, don’t just ask questions about strengths and weaknesses and job history. Ask questions that help you identify what kind of employees they will really be, for example:
Look for employees who show passion for your company, product and service and fit with your core company values. Make sure you like the person. This may sound like a no-brainer but when hiring a genius or someone with exceptional technical skills; it can be easy to overlook the reality that they might be problematic on an interpersonal level.
If you do end up with someone who is not a good fit, be brutal about ‘getting them off the bus’ quickly. It’s a painful process for everyone involved but better if dealt with quickly.
Last but not least, always be interviewing. Proactively keeping your hand in the talent pool gives you access to the best talent even if you don’t have an immediate need. You also don’t want to wait until you lose someone to replace them.
As always, if we can assist in any way, please get in touch.
Ever wondered what you can do to reward your employees beyond the annual increase? Leaders understand the importance of rewarding their employees and making sure they feel appreciated. There are a lot of interesting ways to do this:
Surprise them with tickets. This could be any type ticket. Check with your team what they enjoy: tickets to the local rugby or soccer game (depending on their preference, of course), ballet or music concerts (which star is coming to South Africa next?) We had an incentive once that offered tickets to Cirque du Soleil… what an experience that was!
Good luck with thinking of creative ways to reward your staff!
Job seekers are often ill-prepared for the emotional turmoil that lies ahead when embarking on a job search.
Typically you start out with excitement at the unknown possibilities. However, the decision to leave your current job is never an easy one. Weigh up the pros and cons but don’t get stuck for too long pondering whether it’s the right time to leave and anxiously considering if you’re ready to take that next step.
Next you begin your search for an available position via the newspaper, online, referrals etc. This potentially holds the first emotional dip, as you often get little response from the applications you send out. Of course, it may be that you’ll get fast and furious responses and feel ecstatic. Be aware that this process might take time and don’t give up!
Your first interview… now this is emotional process! A combination of super excitement and fear of the unknown! Remember to breathe.
Waiting on feedback is perhaps the biggest rollercoaster of the whole process. There could even be a constant knot in your stomach that leaps at every beep from your phone.
Depending on the feedback you either end up exulted and signing a new contract or you start the process all over again!
Sounds like fun doesn’t it? There are ways to bolster yourself during the process:
Job searching can be a very exciting time in your life as it brings change. Be sure to make the right decisions that will support you during this process.
Here are some ways you can improve yourself and your leadership skills to help in climbing the career ladder:
It’s up to you to decide how far up the corporate ladder you’d like to climb; then take the necessary steps to get there.
According to Jobvite’s Social Recruiting Survey, 2014 93% of hiring managers will review a candidate’s social presence before making a hiring decision. Disconcerting if you tend to tweet first and ask questions later.
Hiring managers and recruiters use social media platforms to get an idea of who you are, your personality, what you’ve done and how you might fit within their corporate culture before they even talk with you.
They can see:
In short, while they’re looking for information that could possibly give you an advantage, they are also looking for reasons not to hire you; so it pays to be smart and strategic in your use of social media:
You can also:
Nearly all hiring managers will use LinkedIn for every step of the recruitment process, including searching for candidates, getting in contact, and vetting them pre-interview. In contrast, Facebook is primarily used for showcasing the employer’s brand and getting employees to refer their friends. About two-thirds of recruiters also use the network to vet candidates before or after an interview. Twitter appears to be the platform least used by hiring managers, and is used similarly to Facebook, but with less of an emphasis on candidate vetting.
No matter what the platform, however, the takeaway for job seekers is clear: if you choose to share content publicly on social media, make sure it’s working to your advantage. Take down or secure anything that could potentially be viewed by an employer as unprofessional and share content that highlights your accomplishments and qualifications in a positive way.
Good luck with your job search! As always, if we can be of any assistance, please get in touch.
Your employer brand is the impression candidates have of your company and what it would be like to work for you. It’s generally considered an extension of your company culture, which has become a critical differentiating tool for attracting the best employees. A full 87% of respondents in a recent survey said they want to join a company that ‘truly cares about the well-being of its employees.’ Only 66% rated a high base salary as important.
There’s no question we all care about attracting quality candidates to work for our companies so why do we, all too often, spend so little time on employer branding? As leaders, we need to get as savvy about promoting our employer brand to attract top talent, as we are about positioning our corporate brand to attract new business.
Creating a great culture; and an employer brand as an extension of that; really matters. To start with, these are questions all leaders should know the answer to:
Knowledge is power. If in answering the above questions you find areas of your culture that are less than desirable, address them. Go about creating a culture people will want to be part of. Universal characteristics of attractive brands include the following:
Once you have a clear idea of what your culture really looks like, design your recruitment strategy to reflect it: fun and relaxed or serious, fast-paced and ambitious. Make sure your corporate website and social media pages do a fantastic job of representing your culture and that anyone who represents your brand to potential employees understands your culture and is a good ambassador for it.
Invest in your current employees. It’s crucial that all you claim as an employer brand is true and accurate; only then will all employees ‘live’ the brand, and demonstrate it’s desired behaviours, beliefs and culture. Everyone in the organisation is responsible for your employer brand, not just HR and marketing.
Try and see your company and all its touch-points (including your interviewing, hiring and onboarding processes) through the eyes of the applicant. Are you standing out head and shoulders above your competition as a great company to work for? This kind of strong employer brand offers significant benefits:
Ensure that the creation of a strong culture and a strong employment brand is an ongoing effort that is ingrained into how you do business.
As always, if we can assist in any way, please get in touch.
In my last article I spoke about evaluating your talent selection system to make sure each step along the way helps you identify, source and hire the very best candidates, both for the role and for your culture. Probably the very best place to begin is in how you compile your job descriptions, as these will form the basis for how and to whom you target your advertising, as well as for your interview questions and selection decisions.
Crucial in helping you attract the right people, well compiled job descriptions have an ongoing purpose throughout the employment lifecycle, so it’s worth time upfront getting them right. They give both the employee and the line manager a reference point for the responsibilities and level of performance expected from the role.
Here are the essentials you should include in each job description:
What to avoid
Your job descriptions will form the basis of your job advertisements. Many job postings start with the company description instead of speaking directly to the job seeker. Remember, this is your sales pitch to potential candidates, with the hope that you land your company’s next star employee. So instead, begin with an attention-grabbing first paragraph that clearly states who you’re looking for, what they’ll be doing, and why they should want the job.
Using job descriptions will help you better understand the experience and skill base needed to enhance the success of the company. If I can assist in any way, please get in touch.
A successful recruitment strategy is made more effective by awareness of the latest trends happening in corporate recruiting. Why not be one of the first firms to adopt trends that one day, all progressive companies will have to follow?
Part 1 in this series looked at the widening skills gap and an increased emphasis on planning and future-focus, and part 2 looked at generational shifts, the return of boomerangs as a primary source and the continued move of women into power positions.
Today I’ll be covering:
Big Data and Metrics
While it’s certain big data is the future of recruitment, understanding how to make sense of it will be critical to a company’s success. You can’t just “data mine” your way to the right candidate; you need the right tools namely workforce analytics and applicant tracking systems to analyze it, and the right people to interpret it and provide insight on the importance (or lack thereof) of each data point. The best recruiting teams will use technology that bubbles up the right candidates, and know how to weight the data points to provide the best possible fit for a position.
2015 is the year for recruitment metrics. Historically, recruitment success has been gauged by time-to-fill quotas or cost-of-hire numbers. All these numbers do is tell you how quickly you hired someone at the lowest possible price. The shift now is to quality of hire, as measured by performance and retention. Other valuable metrics to keep track of include:
Here are just three of the reasons why cloud computing matters for recruiting professionals and talent management:
The Mobile Platform
83% of job seekers currently use smartphones to search for job openings and 45% of active candidates have applied to a job on their mobile device. Yet only 20% of companies have a mobile friendly career site. Companies are going to have to start optimizing their websites for mobile; perhaps even creating mobile applications; in order to appeal to the on the go job seeker and to be able to promote opportunities to people at all times, no matter where they are.
Because of its versatility and incredibly high response rate (compared to other communication platforms), the mobile platform is set to become the primary mechanism for communicating with prospects/candidates, spreading employer brand messages, viewing recruiting and job description videos, and pushing relevant open jobs to applicant communities. Eventually it will be used by most to offer live Hangouts/Meet Ups, for candidate skills assessment, for most candidate interviews, to find referrals, and finally to allow individuals to accept job offers directly on their phone.
Look out for the next two articles in this series, which will cover the following trends in corporate recruiting for 2015:
If we can be of assistance in the meantime, please get in touch.
Leadership styles are not fixed in place, cast in stone for all time and permanently attached to an individual’s personality. They are interchangeable. The best leaders know that different styles are applicable to different situations and to different people, and will choose the style best suited to get the desired results. It’s probably true to say, however, that each leader has an instinctive, dominant style. Following on from last month’s article on leadership theories, let’s look at some of the main leadership styles:
Useful for when there is no need for team input or input will not change the end decision. This style has the leader making decisions without consulting anyone and has been shown to be the most demotivating.
Builds consensus through participation and is most effective when the leader needs the team to buy into or have ownership of a decision, plan, or goal. It is not the best choice when a quick decision is called for.
Leaders offer support and advice but largely give the team freedom in how they manage their work. Very high job satisfaction for people with high autonomy but damaging for people who don’t manage their time well or need additional knowledge, skills or motivation to get their job done well.
Moves people towards a shared vision and openly shares information, telling them where to go but not how to get there. This style is best when a new direction is needed but can fail when trying to motivate more experienced experts or peers.
This style connects wants to organisational goals, helping people find their strengths and weaknesses and tying these to career aspirations and actions. This style is good when delegating challenging assignments, demonstrating faith that demands justification leading to high levels of loyalty. Done badly, this style looks like micro-managing.
A very collaborative style focused on emotional needs over work needs, creating people connections and harmony. Often used alongside visionary leadership, it’s useful for healing rifts and getting through stressful situations, but used badly allows for the avoidance of emotionally distressing situations such as negative feedback.
This “do as I do” style expects and personifies excellence and self-direction. Great if staff are already highly skilled and self-motivated and quick results are needed. Over the long term though, this style can lead to exhaustion and decline.
Soothes fears, gives clear direction and expects full compliance (agreement is not needed). This approach is best in times of crisis when safety is at stake, when you need rapid in questioned compliance or with problem employees who do not respond to other methods. It should be avoided in almost every other case, because it can alienate people and stifle flexibility and inventiveness.
Rigorous rule-followers, this leader ensures that people follow procedures precisely.
Appropriate for managing people who perform routine tasks or for work involving serious safety risks or large sums of money. This style is much less effective when flexibility, creativity, or innovation are called for.
This style is exemplified by integrity, self-awareness, empathy, humility and high emotional intelligence. Transformational leaders motivate people and communicate well. They set clear goals, have excellent conflict resolution skills and hold themselves accountable for their actions.
Charismatic leadership resembles transformational leadership: both types of leaders inspire and motivate team members. The difference lies in their intent. Transformational leaders want to transform their teams and organisations, while charismatic leaders often focus on themselves and their own ambitions.
If you’d like to identify your instinctive leadership style, here’s a handy online quiz.
If you have any questions, please get in touch.
In the first two articles in this series, I looked at the reasons you should care about strategic staffing and key issues driving the need for it. It’s so much more than the 3 R’s of recruitment, retention and retirement; it’s the strategic alignment of a company’s human capital with its business direction so it can achieve its mission, goals and objectives. Today, I’d like to outline a process for this strategic alignment.
Step One: Set the Strategic Direction
Review the performance requirements of your organization’s strategic plan and annual performance / business plan, along with work activities required to carry out the goals and objectives of the strategic plan (long term) and performance plan (short term). Identify all core skills and competencies needed for success. Start with specific key positions or occupations, particularly critical staffing issues or job categories; not entire business units or organisations. Interview senior executives and leaders to gain their buy-in and ensure they understand the importance and value of the planning exercise.
Step 2: Analyse the Workforce, Identify Skills Gaps, and Conduct Workforce Analysis
Step 3: Develop Your Action Plan
Refine needs in terms of total numbers and competency requirements. Identify strategies to close gaps, plans to implement the strategies, and measures for assessing strategic progress. These strategies could include such things as recruiting, training / retraining, restructuring, contracting out, succession planning, technological enhancements, etc. Critical roles should not just be senior roles but those that bring significant value or are “mission critical” to the overall value chain of the business. Review with key stakeholders to gain buy-in, confirm their role and establish critical success factors and ways of working together (collaboration on interviewing, tools in place, hiring process, who has final say on compensation, etc.).
Step 4: Implement Action Plan
Ensure that human, technology and fiscal resources are in place, roles are understood, and the necessary communication, marketing, and coordination is occurring to execute the plan and achieve the strategic objectives. Know where your company will look for the talent it needs (internally versus externally); the build versus buy talent approach. Integrate with other company planning processes.
Step 5: Monitor, Evaluate, and Revise
Monitor progress against milestones, assessing for continuous improvement purposes, and adjusting the plan to make course corrections to address new workforce issues.
In the next articles, I’ll be looking at some tools and tips for effective workforce planning. In the meantime, if we can be of any assistance, please get in touch.