Archive for April 2015

Use Time Percentages With Job Accountabilities

April 27, 2015

Why should a leader bother indicating the percentage of time they’d expect an individual to spend on various accountabilities within a job?

That question is often best answered with other questions:

What happens if an HR person wants to spend 50% of their time in compliance and 20% in benefits administration but the organization needs the individual to spend 30% in recruiting and 40% in talent development?

How about the sales person who wants to spend 40% of their time nurturing existing client relationships and 30% of their time networking.  But the organization knows from previous experience the position requires at least 50% of the time cold calling to get those calls and 25% in elaborate proposals and reporting?

On the surface, assigning percentages of time for accountabilities seems like an easy step to skip because it’s assumed “it’s obvious!”   However, it can be the deciding factor for an individual to de-select themselves from consideration in a job and a predictability factor of success for any incumbent.

Organizations empowered to identify time percentages in their job accountability descriptions experience more success.

The Value Of Written Goals

April 17, 2015

Mark McCormack, in his book What They Don’t Teach You at Harvard Business School, tells of a Harvard study conducted between 1979 and 1989. In 1979, the graduates of the MBA program were asked, “Have you set clear, written goals for your future and made plans to accomplish them?” It turned out that only 3% of the graduates had written goals and plans; 13% had goals, but not in writing; and 84% had no specific goals at all.

Ten years later, in 1989, the researchers interviewed the members of that same class again. They found the 13% who had goals that were not in writing were earning twice as much as the 84% of students who had no goals at all. And most surprisingly, they found that the 3% of graduates who had clear, written goals when they left Harvard were earning, on average, 10 times as much as the other 97% of graduates all together. The only difference between the groups was the clarity of the goals they had for themselves when they graduated.

 Yes, that’s correct, the 3% who had clear, written goals earned ten times as much as the 97% who didn’t have clear, written goals. Almost all successful people have goals, and outstanding high achievers have clearly defined written goals. That said, why do so few people actually write out their goals?

 Leaders should empower their direct reports to write down their goals and they’ll see them become more successful.

 source: Goals! by Brian Tracy

No Need To Share A Candidate’s Assessment Results With Them

April 10, 2015

More and more companies are using assessments during their selection process to help in finding the right candidate. As a result, candidates are becoming increasingly familiar with and interested in selection assessments. Many candidates are now asking hiring managers if they can see the results of their assessments. We strongly urge our clients not to share or even discuss assessment results with candidates until they are hired (using the assessment results during a new hire’s on-boarding helps the new hire get off to a great start).

Assessments are confidential property of the organization for which they have paid and regardless of a candidate’s insistence, hiring managers should not feel obligated to show them their reports or discuss their results. Without expert interpretation, these assessments can EASILY be misinterpreted. So, unless the hiring manager or the candidate chooses to invest in having the assessments debriefed by a behavior expert, the candidate’s impression of what the assessments indicate can create an inaccurate impression of the selection process; this often leads to inappropriate conclusions about where the candidate stands in the selection process.  Since no assessment should ever be a go/no-go decision point, the organization may find itself defending how the assessments are used within the process, not just the validity of the assessment itself.

When candidates ask for their assessment results, we recommend the following response:

“We appreciate your interest in our selection tools, but it is our hiring policy not to share assessment results with candidates. Should you wish to purchase assessments on your own, we’d be happy to introduce you to our assessment provider.”

Empowered hiring managers manage the selection process effectively and are more successful.

If The Selection Process Isn’t Working, Tweak It

April 3, 2015

Everyone has heard the definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results.  If hiring managers believe the way they’ve hired in the past gives them as much confidence as rolling dice, why wouldn’t they do something different in hopes of increasing their odds?

Many leaders have a process to yield excellent results and prevent weak, or worse, disastrous hires.  It is important to tweak the process from time to time to accommodate various needs.  That may include using a search firm to source candidates who are then run through the process, adding an additional round of interviews, moving assessments up in the process, or doing a much longer phone interview before flying a candidate into town.

The bottom line is, there needs to be an evolving process – not just a particular kind of interview, or use of an assessment.  A process that yields certain results and allows for adjustments when necessary is critical.  Don’t throw out an entire process, but objectively examine what seems to be working well and where it could be improved.

Empower hiring managers to make successful hiring decisions by giving them a process that works.