4 Reasons New Hires Fail and How to Avoid a Problem

March 28th, 2012

Not every hiring decision turns out to be a good long term fit with the company. How does the interview process help determine this and how can you try to avoid a bad hire?

Leadership IQ, a research and management consulting firm, recently conducted a study that showed 46% of new hires will fail within the first 18 months of employment. And the top 4 reasons had nothing to do with the skills the new hires possessed, but were more about the attitude of the employee. So what were those reasons, and how can you recognize the red flags?

  1. A new employee is unable to accept feedback. It’s difficult to know whether or not someone is going to be coachable after only an initial meeting. However, the inability to accept criticism is the top reason an employee doesn’t work out. Managers should assess this trait in the interview. Ask a prospective employee how they handle both positive and negative feedback.
  2. A new employee is unable to keep their emotions in check. We all have things that will affect us negatively in our lives. The key is to make sure these things don’t affect us at the wrong place or the wrong time. Sometimes it’s difficult to tell the difference between what we should take personally and what we shouldn’t. Gauging an employee’s maturity level will go a long way to determining how they will be able to keep their emotions in check at the office.
  3. An employee lacks motivation. Every employer likes to see a new addition to their team take some initiative on the job. However, some people don’t have the same drive as others. Look at their job history. Talk to several references. That way you can determine if someone is motivated enough to take on the work of their required job and potentially beyond.
  4. A new employee simply doesn’t have the temperament for the job. In today’s market, a lot of employees are competing for the same available positions. This will lead to candidates who don’t precisely fit the job applying and occasionally getting the job. Not everyone is capable of handling every possible position. Some jobs require certain temperaments to be effective in the role. A timid individual will not likely succeed in a management role while a more aggressive individual might have a difficult time being part of a structured team. Pay attention to the personality traits that might suit each opening and look for people who have a solid chance of succeeding.

Looking for your next new hire?  Contact Gage Personnel – we offer a pre-screening process that can help narrow down the right candidates for your job.

6 Ways to Improve Your Networking Skills

March 16th, 2012

You’ve heard it every time you’ve asked for advice on how to find a job. You have to network. The age of social media has made this seem easier than ever, but sometimes the sea of web pages can be just as difficult to navigate as an industry mixer. Both old- and new-school techniques can be applied to the 21st century job search. Here are 6 ways to maximize your networking.

  1.  Tell Everyone That You’re Looking For a Job. Pride is sometimes our own worst enemy. It’s hard to admit to total strangers that you’re out of work. One of the most common questions when you meet someone new is “So, what do you do?”  You can answer it honestly but then add “I am currently between opportunities. Do you know anyone looking for someone like me?”  This will plant the seed in their mind.
  2. Use LinkedIn Effectively. LinkedIn is one of the best resources for professional networking currently available. Make sure you use it to best of your ability. Update your job title and reflect that you are seeking a new opportunity in your chosen field. When making a new connection, don’t simply send the pre-typed introduction message. Take a moment to write a couple quick sentences explaining who you are and why you would like to connect with them.
  3. Prepare Your Elevator Pitch. A common practice in a lot of industries is to develop a short speech to describe your product or service to a new prospect. Consider what you have to offer and make sure you communicate your message effectively.
  4. Carry Business Cards. When you’re telling everyone you meet that you are looking for a job and you’ve effectively shared your elevator pitch, you need to close the deal. They won’t remember you if you don’t give them the tools with which to do so. Have professional cards made up and include an easy to remember email address such as “firstname.lastname”.
  5. Join Face To Face Business Networks. Look in your area for groups in your industry that meet regularly and get an invitation. Networking groups are usually very excited to have new members and more participation.
  6. Start a Blog. If you are looking for a new opportunity, position yourself as an industry leader. Begin a blog that shares your insights on your industry and its best practices. When you meet that stranger and share your elevator pitch, you can include that you write about the topic as well. Make sure you have the web address on your business card as well.

Looking to expand your career search? Contact Gage Personnel to tap into their established network.

How to Be a Better Boss

March 9th, 2012

The job search is as much about the candidate finding a great opportunity as it is about the client finding a great candidate. The interview process is all about compatibility. As soon as the job requirements and skill sets are met, it becomes a matching of personalities to create the best team possible. A manager’s primary job is to ensure that the team is harmonious, and there are a lot of ways to go about that. When an employee feels their direct manager is on their side, long term stability is the result. Here are three tips to make sure you’re the best boss to each employee you manage.

  1.  Be a great listener. Make sure that your employees know that you will listen to anything they want to share, without rushing to judgment. Periodically check in with each of your employees to give them an opportunity to share things that might be on their minds about their jobs or the company environment. Don’t have an immediate solution. Make sure they know you are really listening and that you will use this information to formulate the best possible answer to their concerns.
  2. Discover what people do best. Each employee has a list of job duties and they may be competent at all of them, but to really encourage each employee to be their very best you need to find out what they excel at and direct their performance toward it. The first step in this process is to understand how each employee functions – how they learn, how they react to stressful situations and what kind of work satisfies them. You will find that your team is more effective and efficient if each member is working to their full potential.
  3. Effectively communicate. If your employees don’t understand what is expected of them, they will not be able to live up to your expectations. When asking for a task to be completed, be sure to communicate that clearly. Be firm and consistent, but also include your team in major decisions that will affect their performance or work requirements. Delegate where you can. Manage time and resources. Most importantly, be available.

Looking to add the next great member to your staff? Contact Gage Personnel to find the right fit for your existing team.

5 Ways the Job Search Has Changed Post-Recession

March 2nd, 2012

It is no secret that the job market has permanently changed since the recession. While there is improvement in hiring there are new things to consider when looking for a position. Keeping these things in mind is important to successfully conducting your post-recession job search.

  1. The Jobs Landscape has permanently changed. The truth is there are some jobs that are just no longer available in today’s market. Some of the positions that were eliminated in the recession have not and will not come back. Reinventing yourself and leveraging your transferable skills will be imperative to convincing a hiring manager that you are a good fit for their open position.
  2. Show activity even in times of unemployment. If you have been out of work for some time an interviewer is bound to ask the question, “What have you been doing since your last position?”  The worst answer to this question is “Looking for a job.”  Periods of high unemployment take their toll for sure, but employers are looking for positivity in their next hiring decision. Make sure you can answer that question with something tangible. Did you do some volunteer work? Did you start writing that book you always wanted to write? Did you take that opportunity to spend more time with your family? Take that time to focus on what you have done rather than your unemployment and it will reflect positively on you as a candidate.
  3. Networking is important. Prior to the recession the major job boards were king, but now companies don’t want to find anonymous candidates on the internet. Networking has always been important and referrals are the best way to make new employment connections in the market today. Using a staffing company to help you find a job is one great way to make this happen. They already have a network of clients and can market your skills.
  4. There is no such thing as a conventional resume. There is no one way to write a resume and no matter how many people you ask for opinions, you’ll get just as many conflicting answers. Your resume is a marketing campaign for you. You can no longer have just one resume and be able to send it to every company to which you are applying. You need to tailor your resume for every opportunity.
  5. There is much more competition. Even though the market is improving there are still a lot of people looking for jobs. This means you might be one of several candidates interviewing for the same open position, and only one of you can get the offer. Employers have the luxury to interview lots of people to find the one they consider “perfect” for that job. Make sure that you show them why you are the candidate they should hire.

Looking for the best way to find a job in the changing employment market? Gage Personnel can be an advocate for you.