A simple hiring process that advocates including members of your team in writing the job description, and then recruiting, interviewing and onboarding new hires, by a former CEO in a small business.
The Engaged Hiring Process is a 45-page ebook for small business hiring.
The book’s author, Zane Safrit, advocates a “low risk, high engagement” hiring process. He says that you reduce the risk of making an unsuccessful hire when other members of the team are involved. He says a successful hire starts with the job description and goes through onboarding new employees.
The book covers writing a job description; recruiting; interviewing; and onboarding your new hire. The Engaged Hiring Process is an easy-to-read conversational and strategic approach to hiring.
Safrit calls it a simple hiring process and says he used it to great success to make excellent new hires when he was CEO of a call center. As a result, the company grew revenues and sustained positive cash flow.
Unfortunately today, Safrit says, in most small businesses the hiring process is far from what it should be today. Here’s an excerpt in Safrit’s own words:
“The hiring process, particularly the job descriptions, for too many of today’s companies was described by an early business ‘thought leader,’ Lewis Carroll, in his fable Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.
One day Alice came to a fork in the road and saw a Cheshire Cat in a tree.
“Which road do I take?” she asked.
His response was a question: “Where do you want to go?”
“I don’t know,” Alice answered.
“Then,” said the cat, “it doesn’t matter.”
Have you worked for a hiring manager who stands at the fork in the road, needing a new employee and when asked who do they need, answer: I don’t care. They gotta ‘do x’ or ‘work the swing shift.’ There is no mention of strengths, talents, attitude or culture fit. Too often, no one else in the team or department knows their boss is looking to hire.
Today’s standard hiring process is too-often a stand-alone operation controlled by a few. The number of participants is kept to a minimum – a manager, a director and sometimes just one – for decision-making speed and to avoid disrupting current operations. The process remains unchanged since the founder opened the doors that first day. That’s how it’s done here and look where we are today.
The candidates are interviewed in an assembly line fashion. The manager or director orders someone to Set up a day of interviews, back-to-back. We need to get that position filled ASAP!
The best result is a new employee whose resume claims may match their professional realities. The worst is a new hire whose strength is laughing at the hiring manager’s jokes or being a star performer … on the summer league softball team. Their hiring releases sighs of relief as much as cries of celebration.
This new employee arrives on the first day, excited and brimming with optimism at their new opportunity. He or she is shuttled through an on-boarding process like a car-frame is shuttled through an assembly line. Each employee-cog in this assembly line completes the minimum requirements for their on-boarding task. As the do, the new hire’s enthusiasm is replaced with their indifference, cynicism and apathy.
The bad news of this process and its outcome hides in reports and emails and powerpoint presentations, deflecting accountability and any potential learning opportunities. This ensures its repetition with the same results repeated: one more disengaged employee.
How detrimental is a mis-hire to a company’s results? According to Dr. Brad Smart, founder of TopGrading: ‘Based on our studies, the average costs of a mis-hire can be six times base salary for a sales rep, 15 times base salary for a manager, and as much as 27 times base salary for an executive. Ouch!’
Ouch is right. Can your company afford that ouch?”
Safrit (pictured right) says it doesn’t have to be that. He advocates getting your team involved in the hiring process. He calls it the “low risk and high engagement process.”
“Past performance is no guarantee of future results. However, as CEO, we created and executed this process to make four great hiring decisions, hiring three great people and passing on a great person who fit better in another culture. Revenues grew by 80% while retail prices dropped by 70%. Cash flows remained positive. Sales conversion rates grew from 50% to 80%. That is right, 80% of prospects became customers.
Safrit doesn’t hold himself out as an HR expert. Rather, he’s a businessman who learned by doing. As he was working his way up the ranks, he says, “I experienced the joy and results of being included in the hiring process and the pain and agony of being excluded. I know how tough the challenges are for managers in these environments and that resources, particularly for training, are limited.”
The book is a free downloadable PDF document that you can print out on your local printer, or read on your computer or tablet. Go here to download it.
And what about your existing employees? How do you develop them and engage them to partner in the company’s success? Safrit’s also written a 20-page ebook, called “10 Ways to Jumpstart Employee Engagement” that you can download for free.
People always feel good when they feel included. This works in a small business because it fosters teamwork among your employees and allows them to play a role in recruiting new employees. Just make sure that the final decision is still on you though or it can get quite confusing.