Actionable Tips You Can Start Using Today To Have A Ground Breaking Team Behind You
Whether you like it or not, your employees’ attitudes will dictate how your company will deliver its product/services and will directly effect the relationship with the customer.
Yes, you have to hire good people with relevant skills.
But that doesn’t guarantee them performing and bringing in remarkable results.
Punctuality is important, etiquette is important and, of course, getting things done is important.
But problems sometimes arise, and things aren’t done most efficiently all the time.
Without good skills, culture fit and clear objectives, people are going to end up going round in circles (and stop making progress).
Sometimes good people are not the right fit for the job, or the job is not the right fit for them.
This will hold them back from aligning their work with their personal aspirations; consequently, they would feel unfulfilled.
On the other hand, you could simply not detect a certain lack of skill out of the get-go, and issues will come up later when it’s too late to make a change.
The amount of extra work, extra training, extra recruiting, extra team-meetings means that money meant to be spent on marketing or product development will be spent on fixing issues that could have been avoided from the start.
That’s why it’s important to have a good system put in place from the beginning so that the whole recruitment process will run smoothly and important checks will be made. A thorough recruitment process will ensure that the number of following issues will be reduced to (hopefully) 0.
And, in the process, it might even get you thinking about what you are truly after in new hires and the priorities of your criteria.
You want to get the most out of your people and offer them the best work experience that you can, so let’s get organised and delve into the following:
Setting Up a Hiring Strategy
In order to get the most out of the available workforce that is waiting to be recruited by you, you need to implement a plan.
This plan has to be, of course, tailored for your organisations’ specific needs.
The big advantage of having a strategy is that it can be reused for each hire, so that you don’t have to start from the beginning each time or even encounter any overlaps or lack of skills because something important kept slipping your mind.
Building a system forces you to think about what is important and what isn’t. It forces you to prioritise, which yield results after the recruitment process ends.
There are 2 types of hiring strategies:
For hiring locally, you should take into consideration the local population and use whatever you can to your advantage.
Where are the best Universities located?
What events do your prospects go to (so you can send your recruitment team there and try to meet some of those prospects).
What are the general expectations that people in that city has from such a job that you have an opening on?
Hiring locally means that you have to get familiar with local organisations and events.
Sure, post online!
But even social media can be used much more efficiently if it is target properly and especially if you can get the attention of relevant people in your target area.
Provide food, organise workshops, have open office days, attend other local events, get some local physical ads, experiment!
The second type of recruitment strategies is remote recruiting!
Although, it’s instrumental to set up clear criteria and paint a very clear image of what your desired employee should be like, in hiring remotely it is even more pressing to do so.
This is because there is a much bigger pool of candidates in a much bigger market.
So if your organisation is a local celebrity, it probably isn’t on the global scale.
Also, it’s hard to imagine how you can make a fair comparison between candidates without having a framework in place that you follow thoroughly in the recruitment process.
The point is, going with your gut is not an option!
So do this:
- Decide on key hard skills and soft skills.
- Ask relevant questions about the candidate regarding those skills.
- Think about personality (culture fit) aspects that are important to your organisation.
- Ask relevant questions.
- Ask the candidate to tell you about his past experiences where he used those skills.
- Ask him/her about past challenges and how he/she surpassed them.
- Ask him/her about potential (real) challenges that could arise within your workplace and how he would approach them.
- And of course, listen to whatever questions he has about the job (this shows what he’s interested in)
Now, after you have compiled your list of relevant questions, give every interviewee a grade on his/her answers. For each question.
Keep in mind. There are no right or wrong answers.
But the answers your candidate will give you will illustrate how well he/she would fit in your team and resonate with your requirements and criteria.
But for this to work, you need to have clearly defined requirements and criteria!
One of the advantages of having a strategy put in place is that you can easily observe what isn’t working quite well (the bottleneck in your stream of good hires) and focus more on that part until it improves to satisfactory levels.
Strategies are not exempt from improvement by trial and error. Just like most things in life!
Managers are going to define employee productivity and job satisfaction
Managers are vital!
They are the bridge between an employee and his/her effect they will have on the workplace.
They are the ones who call the shots.
They are the ones who motivate people and remind them what’s at stake, why their activities are important. They are the ones that get the best out of each team member… or the worst.
So managers are a factor that influences the outcome of your organisation.
Don’t think for a second that an employee could not be managed better. There is no perfect. But there is a satisfactory standard that needs to be met.
And it’s not an easy task to do either!
Managers have to deal with numbers, objectives, the product/service itself, and at the same time he/she has to deal with people. People that have different views and opinions sometimes.
And also, short time frames.
The biggest disadvantage is that you cannot test how managers are going to blend in with a team.
Your only chance is, again, to set clearly defined criteria and choose the person who is best qualified.
It’s an inexact science.
It helps a lot if the manager-to-be would interact and get to know the people they would be working with. Even though this would be brief and most times not possible, bear in mind that the most skilled manager could have no common ground for good communication with your already established team.
So watch out for that.
It’s a trade-off.
You’re dealing with people, not with numbers.
Tips to hire good managers
So, we established that you need good managers.
On a larger scale, a bad manager negatively impacts employees’ productivity as well as the company’s culture.
You want to make sure you get your management hire right the first time around.
Start by asking yourself one crucial question:
What are you looking for in a new manager or executive?
A manager has to be a people person. Period. So long as he/she has to work with your people.
He/she needs to have some talents/abilities that will boost employees way of life and work productivity.
Transform talent into performance
A good manager will be able to notice what drives people and what they are outstandingly competent in. They will notice talent, and they will pour gasoline on that fire.
That is what gives people their sense of purpose and joy. Doing meaningful things that they enjoy and take pride in.
A good manager will be able to make these small changes in employees that will shift them into a higher gear.
Give credit and show appreciation
People are smart. They were built for efficiency and for preserving effort.
If people feel that their efforts are not getting them ahead, they will stop trying.
And the organisation will slow down.
People need feedback and to understand where they fit into the big picture. They have an impact. People love knowing that they are pushing the envelope further. If they truly are.
Good managers are fair to others.
Tailor coaching to learning styles
Again, it’s all about people and understanding them.
Each and every one is different.
And everybody learns differently.
There is a craft in getting to know people and communicating with them on their terms and language. Good managers will reach out. Will learn.
And will use their findings to bring out the best in other people.
This is also where most good managers get their most job satisfaction from.
Do more of what works
It’s a science, after all.
It’s all about experimentation. Trial and error will be ever-present!
Getting bad results, once in a while, is not something unheard of. It happens.
And what is defining of a good manager is his/her attitude towards adversity.
You don’t want people who shy away from adversities.
You want people who handle them competently and leads the team back on track.
Good managers are good leaders!
Interview Question for Managers
The guys from Breezy HR compiled a great list of interview question that you can implement in your recruiting strategy that we discussed earlier in the article.
Of course, you will have to tailor these questions to your own specific company needs.
And ask a lot of open-ended questions so that you can assess where your manager-to-be’s head is at! He/She should be solution-focused, and that’s what you should be looking for.
So, here they are:
Work history and experience questions
These questions will help you find out how a candidate’s background relates to the open position.
1. Tell me your story. How did you get from the start of your career to your last role?
This is a great icebreaker that also gives you insight into how they view their own career path.
2. Tell me about your leadership experience.
Ask them to tell you about a time they helped develop an employee to get an idea of the kind of coach or mentor they’ll be.
3. What was the age, gender and race makeup of the last team you managed?
This is huge. You need to know their views on workplace diversity and inclusion.
These questions can help you predict a candidate’s future by evaluating their behavior in past roles.
4. Can you tell me about a time when a member of your team made a mistake? How did you handle it?
Get a glimpse into the types of boundaries that are important to the candidate and what brand of culture they want to build.
5. What would you do differently next time?
Hopefully, they know what to change so that the next time there’s a better outcome.
6. What was the reaction after that happened?
See how the candidate relates to their team while putting out a fire, and if they’re someone who can take responsibility for their actions.
Soft skills and motivation questions
These questions will help you understand if a candidate can work collaboratively and manage diverse teams.
7. What was the best day at work you’ve had in the past three months?
Instead of hitting your candidates with the same old “What are your strengths” question, this is a more organic way to uncover their strengths.
8. What was the worst day you’ve had at work in the past three months?
To identify the candidate’s weaknesses, simply swap the question around.
9. What’s your plan for building rapport and credibility with your new team?
You want to know how your candidate plans to win the respect of the team.
10. How do you stay in contact with your team members?
Find out more about their communication style.
11. What’s your process for prioritizing tasks during busy times?
Get a feel for how they handle work amid stress and overwhelm.
These questions are designed to help you quickly evaluate a candidate’s skills and mindset by measuring how they handle certain situations.
12. How do you find opportunities to integrate management goals within your team?
Find out if they’re someone who can step up and get strategic when required.
13. What’s your definition of an awesome manager?
Uncover the type of manager your candidate plans to be.
14. What criteria did your last company use to reward employees?
Find out which performance criteria they’re used to tracking.
15. Who was the last person you promoted? What prompted you to promote them?
The answer to this will let you know if they actively work to grow and retain employees.
16. How many people did you promote on your last team?
Assuming the previous answer was yes.
17. How important are deadlines?
Get an idea for how firm or flexible they’ll be.
18. How do you handle missed deadlines?
Get a feel for the candidate’s ability to lead through a rough patch.
19. How do you give helpful feedback?
See if they’re the type to address performance issues directly and work with employees to find a solution together.
20. Tell me about a time you had to give some difficult feedback.
Determine how well they deal with having to give “bad” news.
21. How would you help prevent employee burnout?
Find out where they stand in terms of work/life balance.
Don’t offer too many second chances in other people’s demise
There might be someone perfect for your team.
The returns are not linear! A month of searching for the right person could boost your team and profits many months ahead!
Some people seem promising, but some aspects can surface only through time and experiences.
When there is a perfect fit and an alignment of views and attitudes, things are perfect. And easy!
But when there isn’t, you’re doing a disservice to everyone by sticking to an egotistical desire of making things work and turning the tide around, when you could accept things for what they are.
Setting an organisation on track and keeping it on track is not always an easy job to do.
Sometimes there are uncomfortable circumstances.
And your companies success shouldn’t be compromised because of it.
Success is something that needs to be earned. Every Day. Again and again.
As Howard Schultz, the CEO of Starbucks said:
“Success yesterday does not entitle you to success tomorrow.”
What you do owe to the people who dedicate their time and efforts to you and your team is sincerity, openness and frankness. Treat people with kindness and sensitivity each time. You don’t just represent yourself, you also reinforce your companies mission through your actions.
Also, I discovered that in intense moments people tend to take many interpretations into consideration.
Make things simple and clear! And non-interpretable.
Sometimes, the best thing you can offer people is clarity.
So, I’d like you to leave this article with a sense of appreciation and importance for your team that is behind you day by day.
We tend to get stuck in the weeds of day-to-day business and of goals that we strive to reach.
But please, don’t be laser focused on the gauge so much that you ignore other parts of the vehicle.
The key takeaway of this article is that managers can make or break a team. They can coordinate or collide your organisation!
But good managers don’t actually manage people. They lead! They create synergy and maintain communication and accord.
Make use of the interview questions provided in this article, but don’t forget to further tailor it to your organisations requirements and make them align with your mission statements.