Hire for Talent, Not to Fill the Position

Have you ever hired the wrong candidate for a job role?

You’re not alone. In fact, you’re in good company with 74% of employers acknowledging that they too have made this hiring mistake

How can you hire the RIGHT person?

Hire for talent and not to fill the position.

It seems easy enough to say, but perhaps harder to implement in actuality. In his new book, The Human Centered Team, Glenn Akramoff recounts a time when he faced this challenge within his own work center. 

This story is about a woman named Jane who was in an administrative role and excelled at tasks like financial analysis, proofreading, and event planning. In time, she became the go-to person for other team members and eventually was promoted because of her ability to expand beyond her role and original duties.

Jane was a hire that worked out incredibly well for the team. With her promotion, came the need to fill her previous role and this is where Frank came into the picture. Jane even helped to hire Frank into this administrative position. He was enthusiastic, had a great skill set, and management was very excited to bring him onto the team.

This is where the mistake was made.

Since Jane had expanded her original admin role to include leading the budget process, it was assumed that Frank could take over this task as well.

Management tried to shoehorn Frank into the Jane shaped role. They failed to maximize Frank’s unique skill set and talents because they were so focused on fitting a great new hire into a pre-created and rigid role based on what the previous person was good at.

Was all lost? No.

Management was able to see their misstep and correct it. They gave Frank some flexibility to uncover and develop his specific talents including: drafting reports, crafting social media posts, and creating fantastic PowerPoint presentations. Once Frank was able to celebrate his new role, he was also able to take on new tasks he enjoyed and was good at, to assist other team members.

The lesson learned here was to not be so rigid in hiring for the specific position. Allow flexibility, allow the structure to change to embrace new talent and skill sets, and allow the ego to be set aside if you make the mistake of trying to fit someone in a box they don’t fit in.

When a team, specifically a leadership team is able to let go of their collective ‘ego’, they are in a position to identify potential weaknesses and address them. Overall, this will have a lasting positive impact for their team and entire organization.

This is just one of many real life examples of individuals within the workplace that Glenn shares in The Human Centered Team in an effort to help guide the leaders of today and the future. Watch out for the release of this insightful new book coming soon.

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