Did You Miss This Step For Your Last Hire?

26 July 2017 by Shweta Jhajharia

How do you figure out if someone can actually do the job that you’re hiring for?

You don’t want to have to wait until after you’ve hired them and put them through their induction before you find out they could talk the talk but not walk the walk, do you?

You might think that the easiest way to filter out for the best candidates is to advertise with a higher salary to indicate a more ‘senior’ position.

Maybe not. Let me explain the simple process my client used to filter out three very strong candidates for his bookkeeping role…

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You can see that this applies to literally any job you are hiring for – sales, marketing, operations, business development. Don’t just read the cover letter (I mean, does anyone even read them anyway?) and the CVs…

Put them to a good, well-crafted test and you may just find it easier to start hiring some superstars!

Prefer to read rather than watch and listen? No problem – here’s everything I said in the video as text:

Hi! This is Shweta. I’ve just come out of a consulting session with my client and that was a very interesting one, so I thought I need to share this with you.

My client actually has been trying to hire a finance person who could do bookkeeping, can work with sage, can do basic reporting, and just a reconciliation, follow up on, you know, the outstandings and so on and so forth.

Before we started working together he hadn’t seen much success in hiring for this position. So he was like, “Shweta there’s this position I need to fill. I’ve not been very successful. And how do I go about this?”

So I obviously started asking a few questions just to figure out his process. And at one point I told him, I said “Adam, the issue is that you are not deselecting enough in your selection process.”

“Like what? What do you mean? Deselecting in the selection process?”

I said, “Yes, in recruitment the main thing that you need to do is to de-select very quickly and very confidently.”

And he said, “OK, so yeah I do ask questions but how do you know that someone knows the subject or not because they all claim they do?”

So that’s very easy.

What I helped him implement is some simple interventions. Simple loops or hoop, whatever you want to call it.

We want to check, for example in this position, can the person speak proper English? That’s easy, right? Because they talk. Can they write well right? You can see this in their email communication and there’s a simple document with four questions which the candidate needs to answer. Very simple, straightforward, tells us about their written English.

Then we want to check their technical strength. And in fact, Adam very smartly prepared ten multiple choice questions that shouldn’t take more than five to ten minutes for someone who knows the subject to complete very successfully.

I mean questions like – I’ve kept it open here – what tax code do you use on an exempt transaction? And there four choices. What nominal code range are sales normally? And so on and so forth. I have no idea about the answers myself, but I’m not supposed to know this. The person who is good will know the answers.

Now once you have these documents in place and you got the answers, you know who you are deselecting and who you are moving forward for the final round, which is exactly what he has done. He has got three solid candidates who have scored like really high marks on all the tests and now I’m very certain that Adam will be able to successfully fill this position and this person will do a great job.

Now what I want you to understand is that it’s not just for this finance position. Whether it’s marketing, whether it’s sales, whether it’s operations, projects, you name it. For any position in your company, you need to learn how to de-select people rather than just listening to words and big claims. Make sure you put your candidates to test so that you can assess for yourself if they understand the subject, understand the position or not.

Once you’re clear as to who you’re hiring and what they need to know it’s very easy to put those tests in place. But please make sure because remember if you learn how to de-select rigorously then getting superstars on board is relatively easier.


If you would like to discuss any of the points covered here, please feel free to request a free call below.

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Shweta Jhajharia

Shweta Jhajharia is one of the leading authorities on Business Value Building and the creator of the unique 6M Model. Shweta is widely respected as an impactful, intelligent and results orientated professional who helps business leaders unleash their potential to reach meaningful, higher objectives. This realisation of potential and maximisation... Read more