Recruiting for the whole person

I don’t know about you, but when I’m recruiting people I like to know who the whole person is. I don’t want to know just who they are when they’re at work and who they are during an interview.

I like to know who they were growing up, what their most memorable childhood memories are. What is it that has lead them to my front door? What is the one lesson that they learned?

When you ask these types of questions a person tends to open up and become more of who they really are. It’s a wonderful thing to see this happen in an interview. In the past these questions would have been considered ice-breakers, but these days I think they represent a lot more value.

In a market where we are recruiting for the potential of tomorrow vs the skills and experience of today we need to know a lot more than a resume can tell us.

Let’s face it the resume is dead, or at least fast dying. They represent only a snap shot of what a person did before they came to see you. There is so much more to know about a person and lot more that they actually want us to know.

However, I don’t believe that the purpose of it is gone. It’s just that we’re not asking for the full story when we’re putting someone through a recruitment process. I think we can ask to know more about someone by giving them the opportunity to do so.

We need to go deeper than the now overused question we ask ourselves “Could you sit next them on a 10 hour flight”. We need to be more specific and dig deeper. Learning things like their commitment to personal development via hobbies, interests and education. And what they core values are (what they learned from their family) and who their role models are. What makes them laugh, what makes them annoyed, what are their favourite everythings etc.

Don’t you think that the answers to these questions might be useful to know before you enter into the employment relationship?

Why don’t you try asking some different questions? Or ask for a video, a poem or a portfolio or a social page that sums up everything they think we should know in order to consider their application. This can include a list of things that demonstrate relevant skill sets but it might include a lot more.

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