Top 3 Hiring Mistakes And How To Avoid Them

Acquiring top talent for your company is one the most important steps if you want to grow fast and in the right direction. A team comprised of people with complementary skills and mindsets is bound to create better results than just a group of ninja level players put in the same room.

The basics are simple, yet people seem to make these mistakes over and over again. Read through so you don’t make the step into the wrong direction and see how to get the right people that your business needs.

1. Skill vs Company Fit

Now, this is a tough one, and many fall to its prey. Of course, you want someone whose skills are definitely going to take you to that next level, but you kinda also want someone that will fit in with the team and the company culture as well.

So how to choose?

Well, for starters, you need to have a clear roadmap in your head (or better yet, written down somewhere) and you need to align your next employee with it. If you’re going fast growth and short-term success, then abandon the ship called “Company Culture” and hire a veteran. A ninja level slayer with proven track record that is sure to take you where you want to go.

Keep in mind, however, that these guys usually have a lot of experience under their belts and are sometimes used to doing things their own way. So, if you’re an autocratic leader, you may run into communication problems at the least.

On the other hand, you may be here for the long haul. If that’s the case, it would be wise to start thinking early about company culture and in what direction should you move forward. You’re building a brand, and a brand is not only external. Internal branding is just as important, and can massively affect the success rate of your employees.

Studies have shown that grit, character, and open-mindedness are the traits most responsible for long-term success. In that manner, perhaps you would do better with someone whose skills are not yet on par with a seasoned veteran, but whose character traits fit him (or her) right in your company culture, vision and roadmap. With proper mentorship and guidance, you can mold your new protege on his road to greatness (conveniently tailor made for your company needs).

2. Company Culture Is A Myth

Yes, I did just write a full article about fitting your new hire to your company culture. And yes, I did just say that company culture is a myth. Bear with me, now.

Bear with me, now.

So, over time companies, consciously or not, develop certain internal rules and guidelines. The company culture breeds and defines how people act, behave, and what are their priorities. Some businesses have won many HR points for their company culture and benefits.

However, the problems begin when you start trying to fit in every new hire into that company culture. This problem is two fold:

One, you might just be missing out on the best employee you ever had, one that would break the mundane routine and that would positively shake things up from the inside. You may be missing out on someone with a great set of skills just because he (or her) is a bit too shy, or maybe overly expressive. You would be surprised at just how many recruiters make this mistake, resulting in a very homogenous employer profile, which leads us directly into the second part of the problem.

Your company culture is stale.

No matter how wacky you think you are, if you play the game the same way for years, you’re not looking at it from all angles. Simply put, you’re missing a pair of fresh eyes. Like everything else in life, company culture needs to change and evolve so it could grow and flourish. Keep things the same for too long and you’ve gotten yourself into a very dangerous routine my friend.

You often need an external factor to shake things up a bit, and a wacky, totally non-standard employee might do just that.

However, be careful on some other defining traits – happiness, open-mindedness, positivity. You don’t want someone new to burn the boat from the inside, you want them to spark the old employees into new adventures.

3. Roadmaps, Roadmaps

Are we lost, captain?

As someone responsible for new hires, you need to be on track and prepared to lead your new office star towards the right direction. And don’t make the common mistake of thinking this only applies to junior level positions.

If your new hire is a senior, he may be well aware of in which direction you need to go to achieve success and what are the necessary steps to get there. However, creating a clear and concise roadmap allows him to align himself with the overall picture, as sometimes those two do not exactly match.

On the other hand, if you’re hiring a junior you not only need to provide him or her with a roadmap, but with a mentor who will be able to take him from point “Junior” to point “Medior” in no time.

Mentorship is greatly undervalued and underutilized, even though everybody agrees it’s the one factor that can influence the most on a persons career and business mindset. A dedicated mentor with a well prepared, measurable plan is the what will take your new hire to the next level.

When all is said and done, we cannot tell you the exact recipe for a great team. You need to figure out your short and long term plans, and create the best fitting team based on your goals and needs. We can only point you in the right direction and hope for the best.

We would love to hear your experiences with acquiring company talent and what you think are the best practises for creating great teams. Please share your thoughts with us in the comments.