HERE YOU ARE AGAIN. Your organization just hired another employee who didn’t perform as expected, despite giving a great interview. Too often, candidates who present sparkling résumés and great initial impressions disappoint when they show up for work. Over time, these underperforming employees diminish morale, reduce efficiency and cripple companies. If this scenario describes your business’ hiring record, you’re not alone. Hiring consultant Scott Wintrip blames a phenomenon he calls “hiring blindness,” and its effects can be devastating to a company and its team members.
Fortunately, Mr. Wintrip, who is the author of “High Velocity Hiring: How to Hire Top Talent in an Instant,” has a solution: Rather than counting on one person to interview prospective employees, use a hiring team.
“Hiring blindness consistently results in ill-suited employment pairings,” he says. “That’s because great interviewers routinely overlook crucial details. Natural gaps and limits in perception keep hiring managers from accurately assessing a job candidate’s abilities, even when they’re supported by a rigorous candidate selection process.”
The key to curing hiring blindness is to build a team of hiring managers with who have complementary hiring styles and who can format all interviews as a team effort.
This approach reduces effort and increases hiring speed, Mr. Wintrip says. “Instead of separate interviews that consume most of the day, a brief screening interview by phone is followed by one hands-on interview with the hiring team. With all four hiring styles in the room, interviewers rarely miss anything that’s important or unexpected.”
Determine your hiring style
Your personality, expertise and experiences shape your approach to leadership and how you select talent, Mr. Wintrip explains, adding there are four basic styles of hiring:
1. Tacklers: These hiring managers are fast and decisive. They want to be in control and reach goals quickly. During interviews, they get to the point quickly and appreciate people who do the same. Tacklers tend to hire candidates they think will condense timelines and hit targets fast.
2. Tellers: These people are talkers who use their communication skills to motivate people. They talk a lot during interviews, often selling the candidate on the company and potential opportunities. Tellers tend to hire candidates they think will act upon what the teller has said.
3. Tailors: These are collaborators. They point out that there’s no “I” in “team.” During interviews, they build a rapport and allow conversation to become an open exchange of thoughts and feelings. Tailors tend to hire candidates they think are capable of cultivating strong workplace relationships.
4. Testers: These date-driven hiring managers thrive on clarity. They make decisions based on tangible evidence. During interviews, they gather pertinent details and value facts over stories. Testers tend to hire candidates who offer quantitative evidence that they’re right for the job.
Recognize your blind spots
Blind spots hamper effective interviewing, so be sure to listen to and communicate with your teammates for added insight into each job candidate. Tacklers see drive, Tellers see buy-in to the company mission, Tailors see potential collaborators and Testers see details. All four styles tend to miss things the others see; therefore, every bit of input matters greatly.
“To put it simply, people have a tendency to see what they’re looking for, especially when their minds are primed and ready to see specific things,” Mr. Wintrip says. “In hiring terms, what this means is that you can be blinded by your own expectations.”
Assemble a well-rounded team
It’s important to stack your hiring team with people of all four styles. This will give you an expansive, 360-degree view of a candidate. “A team composed of people with diverse hiring styles gives you a more realistic perspective than if your team were composed of people with just one or two styles,” Mr. Wintrip says.
Coordinate before interviewing
To best leverage each hiring style, your team should have a discussion that answers the following questions:
• What are my style’s blind spots?
• What other styles can better see what I’m not seeing?
• What past hiring mistakes have we made repeatedly?And how will the hiring team use its combined styles to avoid making those mistakes again?
• What do we need to know about a candidate, and how can we best uncover that information?
Failing to hire the right candidate quickly cripples companies, Mr. Wintrip concludes. “As the speed of business continues to increase, it’s more important than ever to fill open positions with precision and accuracy. Companies must streamline their selection process for identifying top talent. A hiring team is the answer. Together, they can use their collective skills to quickly spot the best candidate and help their company thrive.”