The Real Reason You’re Not Hiring the Best People for Your Business.

07 May 2017

Have you ever hired someone then realised after the first few weeks they weren’t the employee match you hoped for?

Perhaps they lacked momentum? Were difficult to manage or simply not a cultural fit?

One of the biggest reasons for poor staff retention is employers hiring on skills then being let down by employee behaviour.

Let’s be clear; the critical skills and experience needed for the position mustn’t be neglected when advertising for the role. However, we cannot stress how beneficial and cost-effective other factors are to your business including emotional intelligence, a new hire's behavioural profile and how they respond to management in the long term.

How does a failure to compromise on a few skills over behaviours cost me money?
One of the biggest costs to a business is staff retention. Hiring on skills alone is a weak guarantee for a long-term employee retention and ultimately a good employer should offer ongoing training on key skills for their employees anyway. A Harvard Business Review study found that up to 50% of people leave a new job within 12 months. Our database study found that the average cost of a bad hire for a medical technology business was £60,000.

What’s the breakdown of the cost to your business?
  • High staff turnover
  • An inability to manage a new hire to optimum capacity
  • An incorrect balance of team behaviours such as too many ‘big picture’ thinkers vs a lack of detail orientated employees to implement that

An inability to retain staff typically lies in:
  • A miss-match in your company values over the employee’s personal values
  • A clash in management style
  • The wrong aptitude to learn for your business requirement
  • The employee's inability to adapt to your business environment
  • Not analysing your team's psychological makeup for best fit
  • The role focusing on the skills your new hire has - but isn’t genuinely passionate about

So how do I find the compromise?
List your ‘skills required’ in order of importance, and negotiate a compromise from the bottom up.

Strongly consider some flexibility in the ‘years of experience required’ in exchange for passion.

Consider a new hire’s aptitude to learn and ability to adapt. Do they appear too set in their ways? Do they appear to have a long term agenda that's different to yours?

Think about whether your management style clashes with how they like to be managed (this is a top reason for employees moving on..)

Think about a behavioural partnership match. For example, if you aren’t detail orientated wouldn’t it be better to employ the guy who is with slightly less experience, than the better-qualified person who's just like you? Did you ask the right questions at interview to adequately vet for this?

What behavioural skills does your new hire need to adapt to your business style?

What training does your company offer? Consider a compromise on those skills because the training should bridge that gap quickly.

Hiring isn’t easy, especially when you consider that appointing someone isn’t the end point of filling the role. Most hiring managers have enough to juggle with on their plate to think about perfecting their recruitment skills too.

Hiring on skills and being let down on employee behaviour is a huge cost that can be avoided by critically incorporating behaviour assessment techniques into the
hiring process right from the start.

What hiring blunders have you experienced and how did you overcome them?

Tim Lawrie, Founder and Managing Director at Projectus