Risk & Business Magazine California Risk & Business Magazine Summer 2017 | Page 24

AVOIDING MIS-HIRES How I Avoided A Costly Mis-Hire In 1 minute A s founder of Topgrading, Inc. and the author of five books on how to hire (and avoid mis-hires), I am also a business owner who of course wants to hire A Players. This morning I avoided a mis-hire, and it took only a minute of my time. The Topgrading Snapshot saved me the time and cost of a day of interviews, and more importantly, prevented what would have been a costly mis-hire. We’re hiring sales reps, so I posted an entry sales job on job boards and on our website, and I used a contingency recruiter. The recruiter called me, all enthusiastic about a “fantastic” candidate. Let’s call him John Doe (all names changed of course). Look at part of his resume, his first job out of college: Leading Insurance Company changed on day after graduation One of the nation’s largest life insurers. FINANCIAL REPRESENTATIVE Sold life insurance and drove business expansion and profitability by engaging proactive contact strategies, performing front-end business development activities, and providing exceptional customer service. • Top producer in a highly-competitive corporate headquarters sales team with achievements including: – Developing a healthy sales funnel and sales pipeline through a highly-disciplined systematic lead generation and lead development regiment that met 120% of sales plan goal within first 45 days; – Meeting 100% of monthly appointment goals, averaging 10 appointments each week; – Instrumental contributor in producing $357K in premiums; one of the highest 24 within five districts; – Achieving a cold-calling success ratio of 50% or more—the highest in the district; – Converted three of five referrals into sales - highest in the company that year This was total BS! Research shows that over 50% of resumes have deliberate falsehoods. Good grief! C Players easily create A Player resumes, and all the books on how to get a job recommend lying on resumes and in interviews. Reference checks are usually worthless (C Players get their buddies to lie for them). This is the #1 problem in hiring, but you know it, right? You’ve mis-hired a lot of people who fudged their resume and lied to you in interviews. Aha, but I avoided that problem. I sent him an email, saying I was impressed with his resume (I was – but I needed to be sure it was for real) and would like to talk with him, but first, would he please complete the Topgrading Career History Form. He responded yes, I sent the link, and he completed it. Like all Topgraders, rather than delve into the candidate’s detailed Career History Form I first glanced at his Topgrading Snapshot. In only seconds this Topgrading Snapshot showed me he had lied on his resume. The Snapshot showed he had been fired from the Financial Representative job, but he claims in his resume he was a superstar in it. I went to his Career History Form and saw that he admitted being fired for NOT achieving quotas! Wow! In seconds the DR. BRAD SMART, AUTHOR, PRESIDENT & CEO OF TOPGRADING, INC. Snapshot told me to reject him, and in less than a minute I found confirmation in the Career History Form. Why would John tell the truth in the Career History Form? Simple. Decades ago I stumbled on to a “truth serum: Candidates are told in the Instructions to the Career History Form: “A final step in hiring is for candidates to arrange reference calls with their former managers and others.” No doubt John concluded, “I’m BUSTED! so I’d better tell the truth on this form.” About 25% of candidates – low performers (like Jones) and liars (like Jones) drop out. Good! You didn’t want to waste time screening them! I had already scheduled a day of interviews with Doe, but of course I cancelled that day. BOTTOM LINE Topgrading Snapshots save 25% of hiring time because the low performers and BS’ers drop out. But the main value of Topgrading, including the Snapshot, is avoiding costly mis-hires. Other hiring methods do not have the “truth serum,” and their reference calls are almost worthless, and those are two reasons they suffer from way too many mis-hires. FREE TIP Topgrading has many methods to hire almost all A Players but you might start by telling all candidates, “A final step in hiring is for candidates to arrange reference calls with their former managers and others.” This simple but powerful tip has prevented millions of mis-hires. + Dr. Brad Smart is an internationally renowned management psychologist and is generally regarded as the world’s leading expert on hiring best practices. He has written five books on hiring including the New York Times/Wall Street Journal best seller Topgrading: 3rd Edition. Topgrading methods have enabled hundreds of small companies and leading companies such as General Electric, American Heart Association, and Barclays to more than triple their success hiring high performers.