Friday, August 12, 2022

Features to hire for more than any skill set

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Shreya Christina
Shreya has been with for 3 years, writing copy for client websites, blog posts, EDMs and other mediums to engage readers and encourage action. By collaborating with clients, our SEO manager and the wider team, Shreya seeks to understand an audience before creating memorable, persuasive copy.

By Tyler Bray, CEO, Owner and Founder of The Trailer Parts Outlet.

Many job descriptions are little more than a series of clichés about a “fast-paced environment” or “highly competitive culture,” followed by a list of required skills. But I’ve found that my most successful hires are actually focused on other traits. In short, as a business leader I see it as my job to very carefully manage the energy and culture of my team. Every hire I make will add or subtract that energy.

I’ve developed a strategy to get better long-term results with the people I hire. While I admit that these properties are less quantifiable than some would like, I believe you’ll get the best results if you look for them. I’ll even include my favorite strategy for determining if a candidate has these traits, and a story about a time I used this strategy.

Remember, you can teach someone any skill they need to know. The traits I’m going to describe fall into the ‘you either have it or you don’t’ category.

Rent based on these traits for long-term success:

• Ethically Worthy

You need people who are self-starters. If someone needs constant guidance, that’s okay, but only in the beginning. As a leader, you need to build a team with a point and shoot dynamic. You point, they shoot and everyone wins.

• Passion

Nothing prevents a burnout like passion. As I said before, this is one of the intangible assets. You have to detect it with your instinct rather than a questionnaire filling the bubble.

• Alignment

I’ve published entire articles on tuning, so I’ll make it as simple as possible this time. You figure out how to use the fuel of what your teammate wants, and you send it to your company so that both the teammate and the company win together. Anyone want more freedom? Money? New skills? Your company also needs these things. Align those goals for best results.

• Cultural Compatibility

Again, hard to quantify. See your candidate in the context of everyone else on the team, rather than as an isolated figure. That should make your decision clear.

• Happiness — they want to be here

We all realize how much of our lives we spend on work. Happiness is so important when you consider that.

How to determine whether your candidate has the right characteristics?

I have asked my people to write a one page essay describing their dream job. I tell them that they should give life and color to that vision as much as possible. I had one candidate that I hired as an assistant. When she wrote her essay, she described building her own clothing brand. In fact, the essay was so enlightening to her that she actually broke up and went to live it. How did I feel about that? Absolutely delighted. Because I know there is a more matched candidate out there, and I really enjoy seeing people live the life of their dreams or at least have a fair shot at it.

In short, ask your candidates what they want. If they want apples, offer apples, not oranges. If you can only offer oranges, try not to put the wrong key in the lock. Find people who like oranges. Your business benefits from momentum with less revenue and better cultural cohesion. Happy employees simply work more effectively and share their happiness with your customers.

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