At some point in your professional journey, you’ve looked around and thought, “How did this person get hired?” Or even more personally, “How did I hire this person?” It’s an age-old question for managers and owners of small and medium-sized businesses: why do we sometimes end up with the wrong fit for our team?
37.9% of employees leave their organization within the first year. What’s even more eye-opening? Many of those who make an exit within the first 90 days offer almost no return on the hiring investment (Work Institute, 2020).
Now, let’s understand why mis-hiring happens and how you can avoid common hiring pitfalls.
1. The Square Peg in the Round Hole Syndrome
A quick hire can mean overlooking the overall fit. It’s more than just skills—it’s about alignment with company culture and values. Make sure you are not just hiring the “best” candidate, but the “best fit” for that particular role. You don’t want someone who is overqualified and may leave within a few months.
2. Over-Reliance on Interviews
Interviews are just a piece of the puzzle. Some excel in that environment but may not deliver the same performance on the job. Diversify your evaluation methods.
Using a mix of in-person interviews, virtual, skills testing, and referencing checking will help you get a better well-rounded idea about the candidate.
3. Not Clearly Defining the Role
An ambiguous job description attracts a mix of candidates, many of whom might not be the right fit. Clarity is key.
4. Ignoring Red Flags
Always trust your gut. If something feels off during the interview or in the reference checks, delve deeper. When you see someone has worked a year or less at the last 4 jobs, you need to trust that trend may happen with you as well.
5. Fearing the Empty Chair
Remember, an open position costs less than a poor hire, especially when turnover costs average a third of an employee’s annual salary (SHRM, 2019).
6. Not Investing in Training
Equipping new hires with the right tools and training can turn potential into performance.
7. Skipping the Exit Interview
An exit interview is a treasure trove of feedback. It provides insights into why employees leave and can pinpoint areas of improvement in your hiring process or work environment. You can identify patterns and make necessary changes by listening to departing employees.
8. Not Checking References
These can reveal aspects of a candidate’s work ethic, character, and performance that may not be apparent in an interview.
Hiring is an art and science, requiring a balance of intuition and strategy. Every decision, even the missteps, offers lessons to be learned. By refining your hiring process and heeding the feedback, you build not just a team but a community aligned with your company’s vision.
To brighter hiring days ahead! 🌟