Hiring Tips From the Folks at Google #2

This is second in a series of three tips, in which we discuss hiring advice given by former Google execs.

Here’s the first set:

Do hire people who are enthusiastic, self-motivated, and passionate.

Don’t hire people who just want a job.”

Good advice, but it begs the question: can every position at your company be filled with an enthusiastic, self-motivated and passionate individual? How self-motivated does the fellow stocking the shelves need to be? Does he need to be passionate about those items he’s taking from a box and placing on a shelf?

I’m not trying to be sarcastic here. It’s a decent question. Especially when many business owners tell me that a large number of applicants are NOT very motivated at all, with many of them just needing a job.

My advice is to hold out for the best qualities for every position at your company. That’s not always practical, but you certainly won’t get what you want if you don’t, well, want it enough.

Let’s move on to the next hiring advice from the folks at Google:

Do hire people who inspire and work well with others.

Don’t hire people who prefer to work alone.”

You definitely want to hire people who work well with others. You could have a very skilled individual who continually rubs the other staff the wrong way. Eventually you find yourself in a “juggling act” of whether his adverse effects on the workplace outweigh his positive contributions.

Someone prefers to work alone? Well, that’s not the most social characteristic, but maybe she’s a phenomenal producer and, if allowed to work on her own, will give you what you need and maybe then some.

But, generally speaking, I’d be concerned about someone who doesn’t want to work with others.

And finally:

Do hire people who will grow with your team and with the company.

Don’t hire people with narrow skill sets or interests.”

This last tip deals with a problem I see coming up more and more these days. New hires that only want the job for a short spell. Maybe 6 months. Maybe 2-3 years. But no long term ambitions and no compelling interest to “grow” with the company.

Again, do your best to hold out for someone who does have a long term view of his employment with you.

All in all, hiring can be a tough proposition. You want the very best, but you’re not sure the very best are going to show up. You’re not sure you can even afford to bring on the very best if they do apply.

So, there’s going to be compromise. As the weeks and months move along, I would recommend steering that compromise more and more towards getting the best.

Keep your eye on the mountain!



 

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