Hire someone who wants your job

Hire someone who wants your job

It’s a straightforward process that a Manager goes through with a recruiter when there’s a need to recruit someone into his or her team. A job is opened, and a brief to source the best candidate based on agreed parameters is provided to the recruiter.

If the recruitment is managed by an in-house function, there’s hopefully a nice warm pool of candidates who are aware of the company and are positively predisposed for working for it (employer branding and EVP in action) from which to start conversations. If a recruitment firm manages it externally, they may engage in a raft of activities including searching their own database, headhunting, profile sourcing and approaching, seeking recommendations, or advertising.

However, the outcome of the process will largely depend upon the Manager’s ability to objectively review candidates and their emotional maturity to exclude subjective motives and reasoning in their decision-making and review process.

Take for example the Manager who has recently been promoted internally and is recruiting externally for the role they previously held. If they’re honest with themselves, they’ll know their limitations, capability gaps, areas for improvement and development. They may choose to recruit based on a tightly defined set of criteria to compliment these gaps – makes sense at a superficial level, but is it the right way to proceed?

If, on the other hand, they are confident in their ability to succeed in their newly appointed position and have the larger strategic view in sight, they may recruit based on broader, more holistic criteria to ensure the very best candidate is selected for the role.

In a situation where the new Manager is uncertain of their abilities (or has been promoted when they weren’t ready), they run the risk of excluding a strong candidate based on their subjective views and irrational fear. Could the candidate who brings in-depth category knowledge, technical expertise, broad business experience and passion to the role ultimately succeed in or want their job? Probably. Should the Manager explore the possibilities with the candidate? Definitely.

In a market where good people are genuinely hard to find, Managers should strive to be as open as possible and suspend any subjective and emotional barriers from the process. Is it really the end of the world if the new hire is ambitious and might one day want their job? Not really. It’s how they are managed that will make all the difference to both the Manager’s and team’s success. And it may also make succession planning a little easier!


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