The Top 4 Hiring Mistakes You Cant Afford To Make


Given the right people, a team of 13 employees can disrupt billion-dollar industries and redefine our expectations and definition of success.

This is the world we live in, and the twenty-first century has brought the world an influx of technological advances, natural disasters, and economic booms and busts.

While the future of business is uncertain, there is one key characteristic that continues to be at the forefront of success: your team.

It is no secret that great teams are essential for an organization's success. We are plastered with stories in the media about how happy, successful teams make all the difference. Whether it’s a sports team competing for a championship, a team of aerospace engineers working towards further space exploration, or a small start-up redefining how the world consumes media; team is the fundamental aspect of why some organizations flourish and others do not.

So, now that we have agreed that a celebrated team is at the backbone of every successful organization, why are some organizations settling for anything less than a team of high performers?

Because finding A players, or high performing employees, is difficult. 

After studying thousands of interviews with the help of hiring professional Dr. Brad Smart, there are four mistakes an overwhelming number of managers make when looking to build a great team.

Resume reliance, unclear job descriptions, an ineffective interviewing process, and useless reference calls are at the forefront of why you are struggling to build the teams you need.

Mistake #1 - Reliance on a candidate’s resume is a key obstacle for managers.

It has been said that the resume is the closest thing to a person’s perfection.
It rarely tells the full story. Nobody who is serious about getting a job is going to tell you they are lazy, lack engagement or ownership, are not empathetic, or dishonest. Yet, we know those people do exist and most of the time it takes a mis-hire to find them. So is everything you see on the candidate's resume true? Does this resume truly provide a clear picture into the work history of the candidate? It is essential to know that a resume fails to paint an accurate picture of the candidate since there is no simple way to fact-check any of the information.

Mistake #2 - Unclear job descriptions are the tip of the iceberg.

At first glance this may seem like a stretch, but it is proven that often times a company’s job description is at the forefront of mis-hires.

Consider this: do you have a clear understanding of what success looks like for a particular position? Are you discussing the fundamental accountabilities and metrics they will need to obtain to be successful in a particular position? If not, you are probably attracting unqualified candidates.

When you list out dozens of attributes that a desirable high performer should have, candidates with only 1 or 2 of those characteristics may be inclined to apply. For example when you list; works well in teams, positive work attitude, self-motivated, flexibility and good communication skills, you are not exactly weeding out any unqualified candidates.

Make sure you don’t fall into the trap of unclear or unspecific job descriptions to ensure you weed out the candidates who are innately unqualified for your position.

Mistake #3 - The interview process must be a defined process.

How can you call it an interview process, if there is not even a process? Is there a method to your madness, or does a potential new hire come into the office and talk with 5 different team members about the same thing.

Next, are you asking the right questions?

Are you ensuring the candidate is telling the truth and that you are covering all the bases?

Finally, it is critical to make sure you are not prosecuting the candidate, but rather creating rapport to understand who they really are as a person and team member. Remember, culture fit is half the battle.

Mistake #4 - Reference calls don’t have to be a waste of time.

Are you consistently successful in obtaining all the information necessary to make a qualified judgment about the potential new hire?

A few issues commonly arise with reference calls. Too many companies do not allow managers to take reference calls. And are your sure the person you are speaking to is really a former boss or supervisor of the potential employee?  If your candidate is lying on their resume, what is to say that the person you speak to on a reference call is not just a friend of theirs.

Any of these sound familiar?

You can learn more about the Topgrading hiring process here!