If you were an animal which one would you be?

Don’t you just love this question? I have used it when opening an activity for a group and needed an icebreaker to help people to loosen up. Works pretty well.

What amazes me is that there are managers asking this question in hiring interviews. That leaves me speechless… Well okay no it doesn’t but it does leave me asking what the heck?!

Such a question may provide the interviewer with some insight into the interviewees stuffed animal collection but I doubt that it will offer much in the way of insight useful in making an excellent hiring decision.

Maybe its me and the fact that someday when I grow up I want to get a PhD in psychology but seriously folks a pop psychology question like this should not be in an interview period!

For that matter not a big fan of the strengths and weaknesses questions either.You know how that will turn out: “Oh well I am too dedicated a worker, sometimes I forget about the rest of my life to do my job” Right my biggest strength is my weakness tactic. Learned a lot about them with that one didn’t ya…NOT!

Here’s a novel thought what about a hiring process that could yield you stars rather than a craps table that got you well…


Do you need a hiring process?

Lets say you need to hire a person for your team. Do you want to hire a mediocre performer? Do you want to hire a low performer? Do you want to hire a high performer?

My guess is NO to the mediocre and low performers and an emphatic yes to the high performer.

I hope you recognize that hiring talented people is one of the most important strengths of a good leader/ manager. And yet so many don’t use good process to get there…

Hiring someone average at best does what for your team exactly? Ensured that your performance will get better? Nope! Actually while the total output may rise consistent with the increase in headcount on the surface, as soon as your high performers realize you hired someone that will at best hit the average you run the risk of demotivating them. No real help there they will think.

SO hiring middle to bottom actually retards performance.

What great leaders do is hire stars. With the right level of courage they hire above themselves. Hire people so talented that the team can only improve.

That is real leadership, real empowerment and delegation then naturally follow.

Question is how do you get there?

How do you hire stars?

A process centered around behavioral interviewing

Developing Leaders recently delivered an 8 hour introductory program in this important technique to HR and ops managers of four national companies

The response:

“You guys just made a whole lot of work for our HR team”

how about this one

“you know there were about 20 reasons why I shouldn’t have been here today (not the least of which is that I will have to work while watching tonight’s football game) and it was definitely the best decision I could have made. Thank you!”

Want to learn more? Let us help you learn how to hire stars.


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Posted in Behavioral interviewing, Hiring talent, leadership development, Leadership Roles and Responsibilities

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