Archive for Current Articles

Dump Your Job Descriptions and Hire Stronger Talent

Dump Your Job Descriptions and Hire Stronger Talent

In my supposed semi-retired state, I’ve been asked to help some PE and VC boards hire a number of C-level officers. Most of the job descriptions sent my way start with the classic laundry list of “must-have” experiences and competencies. As a result, they all get my classic response: “This is not a job description, it’s a person description. Let’s put the person description in the parking lot and first define the work the person needs to do to be considered successful.”

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Posted in: Current Articles, Performance-based Interview, Quality of Hire

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Recruiters Must Master These Critical High-Touch Skills to Stay Relevant

Recruiters Must Master These Critical High-Touch Skills to Stay Relevant

Recruiters can play a strategic role in any company, but too often their focus is filling jobs with a reasonably competent person at a reasonable cost in some reasonable timeframe. But as far as I’m concerned, this kind of hiring is an overhead function that can be automated with some combination of an ATS, a chat bot, and a robot. A more strategic recruiter, on the other hand, is someone who can consistently raise the talent bar when the right talent is hard to find. Let the robots fill the easy positions. The recruiter of tomorrow is someone who can fill the hard roles, and take my word for it — in the future, there will be more hard ones to fill. Here’s how to get started.

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Posted in: Assessing Soft Skills, Current Articles

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How to Increase Quality of Hire by Only Sourcing Semi-finalists

How to Increase Quality of Hire by Only Sourcing Semi-finalists

Separating sourcing from recruiting never made a lot of sense to me. Many sourcers never even talk to candidates and just pass a list of names to a recruiter. But the best candidates, whether they’re active or passive job seekers, always have multiple opportunities and convincing them your opportunity is worth considering involves just as much recruiting as sourcing. So the key is to do both to keep the best people engaged throughout the hiring process — and if you do make an offer, it shouldn’t be tied to a big increase in compensation. Here’s how to get started:

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Posted in: Current Articles, Quality of Hire

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Double Your Productivity With These 6 Recruiting Tips

Double Your Productivity With These 6 Recruiting Tips

When I first became a recruiter, one big frustration was having hiring managers reject good people for bad reasons. When this happened, the hiring manager would inevitably ask, “Do you have any other candidates?” and I would have to do the search all over again. For everyone involved — the recruiter, the hiring manager, and the candidate — this is a waste of time. And when it happens too often, it means the hiring process is broken.

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Posted in: Current Articles, Passive Candidate Recruiting, Recruiting & Closing

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10 Ways to Avoid Making $100,000 Hiring Mistakes

10 Ways to Avoid Making $100,000 Hiring Mistakes

Take a moment to consider the following: If your company hires 100 people in the next 12 months, that’s an annual increase in compensation costs of at least $10 million if you factor in an average total compensation of $100,000 per person. Clearly, the total cost of hiring dwarfs the cost per hire, and no matter how you cut it, that’s a lot of money. Unfortunately, much of this spend will be wasted by hiring the wrong people.

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Posted in: Current Articles, Quality of Hire

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Stop Turnover: Give Everyone a 20% Annual Increase

Stop Turnover: Give Everyone a 20% Annual Increase

Ensuring the candidate has the right information to answer the, “Why do you want the job?” question, starts when I first talk with the person. During this call I suggest that no one should accept an offer for another job if it doesn’t provide at least a 30% non-monetary increase. More important, all offers, including not changing jobs or accepting a counteroffer should be compared using this same benchmark. This idea is shown in the graphic and referred to as the 30% Solution.

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Posted in: Current Articles, Talent Strategy

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Amazon’s Talent Bar-raising Program Reveals Flaws in Hiring Practices

Amazon’s Talent Bar-raising Program Reveals Flaws in Hiring Practices

The Six Sigma movement of the 1980s and 1990s was developed around the same concept of correcting problems as early as possible in the process to minimize costs and maximize final product quality.

The same idea can be applied to a company’s sourcing and selection process based on the idea that too many rejections at the end of the process, including good candidates opting-out or rejecting offers and bar-raisers saying no, means there’s a problem somewhere upstream. Eliminating these upstream problems will reduce costs, increase recruiter productivity, save time, and shorten time-to-fill while raising the quality of the people being seen and hired.

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Posted in: Current Articles, Talent Strategy

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When Personality Tests are Useless for Hiring and When They're Mandatory

When Personality Tests are Useless for Hiring and When They

I’ve long contended that personality style tests like Predictive Index, DISC and Myers-Briggs are inappropriate for screening candidates in or out before they’re interviewed. The problem is that these tests measure preferences, not competencies. More important, most people can modify their preferred style to meet the needs of the situation, something not even considered by these types of questionnaires. As a result, there are just too many false positives and false negatives to make these types of tests good enough for filtering candidates early in the hiring process.

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Posted in: Current Articles, Performance-based Interview, Quality of Hire

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Headhunter Secrets for Acing the Interview

Headhunter Secrets for Acing the Interview

From the company perspective, one of the biggest disruptors involved replacing generic and skills-heavy job descriptions with the answer to this question: “What does the person taking this job need to do over the course of the first year to be considered both successful and highly satisfied?”

The answer resulted in a list of 6-8 KPOs (key performance objectives) describing the work the person needed to do and its importance.

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Posted in: Current Articles, Performance-based Interview

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Eliminating Turnover Requires a Lot More Commonsense and a Lot Less A

Eliminating Turnover Requires a Lot More Commonsense and a Lot Less A

It doesn’t take a lot of insight to attribute the increase in turnover over the past 25 years to the idea that most people change jobs for the wrong reasons. For some proof, just consider this report from Gallup indicating that only 30% of the workforce is fully engaged. According to Gallup, this results in a $1 trillion problem. A more recent survey we conducted on how job satisfaction impacts job hunting status validates the Gallup study.

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Posted in: Current Articles, Rethinking the Job Description

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Candidates Must Answer Yes to These 10 Questions Before You Ever Make an Offer

Candidates Must Answer Yes to These 10 Questions Before You Ever Make an Offer

Whether a person will accept a job offer, reject it, or back out later should never come as a surprise. Any surprise factor can be avoided as long as you follow some fundamental recruiting techniques.

The most important: Never make an offer you’re not absolutely sure will be accepted.

Underlying this rule is the need to test every component of an offer to determine if the candidate will accept it before formalizing the offer in writing.

Testing can be as simple as asking the candidate if he/she would accept a fair offer and be able to start by a certain date. Any evasiveness is a clue the offer won’t be accepted.

A more formal approach to testing involves getting “yes” answers to the ten following questions. It’s important to note that getting a “no” is not a bad thing. Converting the “no” into a “yes” is called recruiting.

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Posted in: Current Articles, Performance-based Interview, Quality of Hire, Talent Strategy

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The Power of the Exploratory Phone Screen

The Power of the Exploratory Phone Screen

In this podcast Lou Adler goes step-by-step through what he contends is a barometer for a company’s entire hiring process. Using this process you will only need to phone screen 10-12 people to interview 3-4 people in-person to wind-up with one great hire. Whenever these metrics are exceeded the problem is either due to ineffective sourcing or weak recruiting or assessment skills. In this podcast you’ll learn how to identify outstanding talent who will not only raise the talent bar at your company but also will accept a fair offer. 

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Hiring for Performance Not Skills

Hiring for Performance Not Skills

Frequently hiring managers make the excuse that they don’t have enough time to spend with the recruiter to discuss a new job. Instead they want the job posted right away. In this podcast Lou Adler describes how this approach wastes more time than it saves and how to convert a 45-minute conversation into stronger hires.

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Lou Adler's Hiring Troubleshooting Guide

Here is Lou Adler's Hiring Troubleshooting Guide, a comprehensive listing which outlines the hiring problem and the solution.

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Handling Compensation

Handling Compensation

In this podcast Lou Adler answers the common candidate question, "What's the compensation." Adler suggests a non-answer to understand what drives the person to excel. If your job matches this you need to pay the person whatever they need.

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Posted in: Current Articles, Podcasts

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