Get everyone involved in hiring
Ask your employees what they think are the necessary personality traits, attitude, and skills for the job. Carol Clymer and Laura Wyckoff, in their report "Here to Stay: Tips and Tools to Hire, Retain and Advance Hourly-Wage Employees" (Public/Private Ventures, 2007), suggest asking current employees these questions:
1. What type of person is the best fit for this job?2. What skills does he or she need? Does our job description accurately describe the skills we want?
3. What people skills does he or she need? How can we find out if an applicant has those skills?
4. What skills, attitudes, or personalities could we use that our team doesn't have?
5. What do you wish you had been told during your job interview?
Another approach: Ask your employees to talk with—or take to lunch at your expense—each of the top candidates. Employees might gain insights that will help you make the final selection.
From the success files: The Baptist Health Care system in northwest Florida includes five hospitals, a nursing home, and a network of mental health services. For the last eight years, the organization hasn't been hiring anyone unless the peers who'll be working alongside that person have interviewed him or her.
The president and CEO of Baptist Health Care says peer interviewing frequently puts the brakes on a decision when a manager is ready to hire, which slows the process considerably. But the results, he continues, are worth it. The organization hires people who are a better fit. When new employees show up, their peers have already met them. The team has a vested interest in a new employee's success. "When you show your employees that you care about and respect what they have to say," the CEO says, "you'll see their morale go through the roof."
Veterinary Economics Editorial Advisory Board member Bob Levoy is a speaker and writer based in Roslyn, N.Y. His newest book is 222 Secrets of Hiring, Managing, and Retaining Great Employees in Healthcare Practice (Jones and Bartlett, 2007).