“Your team is amazing” a colleague told me recently, of course I agreed. She then asked me why that was. I had to think for a moment, and I realised it’s largely because I’ve managed to recruit the right people. So her next question, naturally, was “how do you know who to choose”.
I’ll interview people who fit the “80% plus rule”. They need to meet 80% of the requirements listed in the job vacancy, and meet them solidly. There’s no point pretending that shopping at Amazon counts as online project management experience. The “plus” is they need to have done something remarkable; having a company on your CV which is a legend in online marketing helps, but so would winning a design award as a student.
So my interview list is made up of people who meet the knowledge + skills + performance test. After that I’m recruiting for attitude;
- self motivated
- interested in what they do
- forward looking
Yes, I recruit happy people. I’ve got to work with them, I don’t want a bunch of grumps. I want people who work hard, take responsibility, look forward, have a (mostly) positive attitude, and buckets of sense of humour.
So in an interview I will look for those characteristics – how they’ve handled bad stuff in the past, how they’ve processed it, are they positive about the future, can they laugh at themselves. Do they take fair responsibility for stuff that’s gone wrong, and perhaps more telling – for stuff that’s gone right.
One last thing I look at – how do the candidates treat the secretary. In my last recruiting round she brought each of the final candidates up for their second interview. The guy who was successful was not only courteous he talked to her about how long she’d been at the company, what she liked about her job. He let go of his own nerves and spoke to her like a person. She said he was the one to hire, and she was right.
I know my team are great, individually and together. I took part in recruiting all but one of them – it’d be odd if I thought otherwise.