How To Hire A Great Business Leader?

How To Hire A Great Business Leader

An organization needs people at the helm to achieve its objectives. Running an organization deftly is not a one man show, rather team work and this is the driving force that makes a company great. A team lacking a leader is like a ship without a rudder. Total chaos will reign over a team in the absence of a spirited and talented leader.

But leaders are hard to find and it needs a keen observation on the part of a talented placement consultant or a hiring manager to spot the right talent among the masses.

So what makes an impressive business leader? A great business leader is one who has the creative acumen, initiates action, takes calculated risks, motivates employee, creates confidence, builds morale, ability to think beyond and gets everyone involved.

These are the 5 traits that a recruitment consultant or a hiring manager should look for in hiring a business leader`

Great listening skills:

A candidate applying for leadership roles should have great listening power. He / She should have the inherent ability to take out the wheat from the chaff. He / She will come across lot of discussions and data in his / her day to day job role, but needs to have the acumen to only filter out the productive information in an optimized way. A seasoned hiring manager should initiate simulated discussions with the candidate on topics related with the job role in a short time span to figure out his / her responses and listening skills. If the guy is too eager to throw a response then the candidate might not be the one who can fit the bill check out

Great decision making skills:

An in-depth interaction should be done with the candidate exposing him / her to different situations such as asking his / her view point on a particular real life problem that has occurred in the company and asking his / her opinion on that matter about how to solve it. If the candidate’s answers are vague then it’s highly probable that the candidate might not be a good fit for leadership roles. On the contrary if he / she  gives a solution that is agile, reasonable and to the point then the candidate is having good problem solving skills and fit to work at the helm of a team.

Knows how to move forward gracefully:

A great business leader knows that instead of playing blame game on a particular setback he / she should move forward irrespective of the obstacles. Hence a seasoned recruitment consultant should discuss with the candidate about his / her experiences in handling issues and setbacks in his / her past assignments. Recruitment Consultant / Executive Search Agency can also enquire about his / her view point in solving a particular problem to find out how the candidate reacts with the factors emerging out of a simulated situation.

Leverages networks:

Networking is an important aspect of a great leader. The person should be having good PR skills in order to take the business to a greater height by communicating effectively and improving relationships with employees, customers, suppliers, strategic partners and even competitors. An experienced top level hiring manager can gauge the networking ability of a candidate through his / her body language, analytical expressions, presentation skills, personality traits and psychological signals during an in-depth interview process, reference and social media checks and through his / her personal industry contacts

Strong desire to reach the next level:

As INVAR Kamprad the founder of IKEA said, “The most dangerous poison is the feeling of achievement. The antidote is to every evening think what can be done better tomorrow” So during the interview process the restlessness of a candidate has to be felt with respect to his / her ideas for a better tomorrow in his / her area of expertise. His / Her  hunger to scale new heights has to be gauged and his / her antecedents of achieving targets in an innovative way in his / her  earlier organizations has to verified in order to come to a logical conclusion of fitness for leadership roles.

Emotionally stable:

To be a successful business leader one must have the ability to stay focussed on their ultimate objective while keeping their emotions in check.  On face to face interaction a person’s emotional intelligence quotient can be assessed through various psychometric tests such as:

  • Traditional cognitive ability test which assess verbal, numerical and abstract reasoning
  • Game based assessment
  • Short 10 -12 minute timed separate ability tests
  • Tests mapping candidates profile with the benchmark of the target organisation

Powerfully passionate:

Most of all, great business leaders are passionate about whatever endeavour they are undertaking. In the words of Oprah Winfrey “Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from doing what excites you”. There are six ways to identify a passionate candidate for leadership roles.

  • Discuss about hobbies and interests of the candidates
  • Assess his / her ability to maintain work life balance
  • Evaluating his / her  set goals for professional growth
  • Inherent signs of generosity
  • Test His / Her mettle
  • Digging out the thrill factor

The ways and means discussed above are some of the practical approaches in determining the competency of a candidate for leadership roles. The list is not exhaustive and organizations should also continuously strive to implement rational and quality hiring practices as per their business processes to prevent any costly unwanted surprises that might hinder their progress.

7 Ideas For Recruiting Top Talent For Startups

Start-ups are the Life-Line of Indian economy. A thriving Startup ecosystem opens up job opportunities for millions, thereby continuously rejuvenating an economy. A Startup up also opens up non-conventional job opportunities in the market. For example, the advent of E-Commerce, economy opened up quite a large number of non-conventional job opportunities in the field of delivery, warehousing, operations which are filled by talented individuals.

The startups implement business ideas which are generally quite new in the market. Most of the times they have concepts which are fraught with risks, operations which are volatile, shortage of funding & lack of branding and reputation. All these factors make top talent hunting for a Startup a daunting task. A wrong choice can land you in a soup resulting in bad results for your company. Today we will discuss about the … top tips for on boarding the best talent to contribute in a Startup which can aid to a profitable balance sheet.

A) Explain your business vision in detail:

It is imperative that your vision is thoroughly shared with your candidates so that their vision is aligned with your business objectives and they understand your goals and objectives. Not only this is beneficial for all other team members but it can make you feel confident that someone who will be joining is perfectly aligned with your thought process and consequently he / she is visualizing a growth path for himself / herself as well as the Organisation.

B) Thorough testing of skills:

It does not matter what is written in the CV, how many degrees are mentioned or accomplishments highlighted. At the end of the day the recruit has to be productive for the organization and for this, skills, practical knowledge and positive mind-set of a candidate are the foremost criteria. The candidate has to be subjected to tests and for getting a sneak peak of his / her productive capacity.

A seasoned Placement Consultant can aid a Startup organization to draft relevant questions and add value in remote of face to face discussions that can test the technical and psychological competency of a prospective recruit.

C) Quick decision:

If you want to close a position then it’s advisable to do it quick, since lingering the matter might make it an unfruitful exercise, since you never know who is going to snatch your shortlisted talent

D) Give the candidate a sense of security:

If you want a select a candidate who you think can act as a catalyst in your business and chart its success than it is imperative that the guy experiences a sense of job security and understands that your firms growth path is not stagnant and rather the candidate feels that he / she is embarking on an exciting journey which will elevate his / her career.

If the guy is not feeling the vibes of job and growth security from your organization, chances are there, that he / she  is choosing your company only as a stop gap and will immediately jump ship as and when a perfect opportunity lands in front of him / her.

E) Employee benefits:

You are a Startup and have to succeed in your endeavour. You cannot do that alone. You need a talented and agile workforce. But the talent is always in short supply and your plans might get snapped due to shortage of key talent.

So to attract skilled manpower, you have to offer something that sounds great. Some of the benefits that the Startups can offer include

  • Health Insurance facilities
  • Stipends for upgrading skills
  • Food coupons
  • Incentives
  • Bonuses
  • Free Gifts
  • Memberships
  • Stock Options

Quite sadly, many a times just to save some bucks; Startups tend to skip some of these benefits that are vital in attractingthe right talent.

F) Presence in the cyberspace:

TheStartup need to be interactive in the internet with proper informative web portals highlighting their products & services. Modest presence in LinkedIn, Facebook, QA forums, blogs, review sites, Google local listings are a pre-requisite in attracting talent that works

G) Offer challenging assignments:

Smart employees want to delve deep in to challenging opportunities. The Startup hiring manager should give a brief idea to the candidate about the big, stimulating and ambitious goals associated with his organizations current assignments to bring excitement in the mind of the candidate. Once the talented candidate feels the bigger picture, it becomes easy for the Start-up to lure him / her to his organization.

The tips discussed above can definitely help an organization in attracting great talent with minimal risks and in small budget. These systems are not hard to implement and once these processes are in place, a Startup owner can always find talented candidates flocking to join his / her organization`

We will discuss more ways and means on how to on-board achievers & winners in in our upcoming editions. Till then Happy Recruiting.

5 Ways Organizations Can Protect Them From Hiring Non Performers In Critical Positions

It’s tough to get a job in today’s competitive job market which requires candidates to remain abreast with the cutting edge skill sets in their domain of expertise. Those who are regularly honing their skill sets stay relevant in the job market and are always up for grabs by prospective employers. In this race to survive and succeed some people fail to upgrade their skills and hence their chances of finding a suitable job greatly diminish over a period of time. May be these sort of candidates had performed excellently in their earlier job profiles sometimes back. They might have adorned high corporate positions obtained fat pay packages, lot of skills to show on their CVs and showed stability in their earlier job profiles

But still it’s not an imperative criterion that the person might perform excellently in the current job profile and recruiters should not get weaned just on an attractive CV and form an opinion.

Here are the 5 factors which can help an organization to actually judge candidates’ competence based on hard facts:

The Company Factor – Always look for person’s accomplishment in recent companies, maximum last 3 companies. The Candidate might have worked in 7+ companies but his /her accomplishments in last 3 companies only matter. It might be that he / she had performed as a stellar in his / her 4th or 6th earlier companies but those were a long time back and technology, skill sets and his personal attitude has also changed over the passage of time.

The Time Factor – A Recruiter should check the person’s credentials in a span of last 4 years. If he / she has changed too many jobs in last 4 years, then chances are that there might be a problem with the Candidate. The Candidate might face problems in one or two companies but it’s very rare that he / she has faced insurmountable obstacles in all his / her companies in that duration

The Stability Factor – If a person is too much stable in a present job that he / she  has not changed his job in the last 8-10 years then some potential issues might crop up when he / she is hired in his / her  new position. Chances are that the Candidate might have lost his / her agility, competitiveness and appetite to sharpen his / her skills due to his / her prolonged stay in a single organization. Off course this factor is not relevant if the candidate is working in a very reputed Company like Microsoft or Tata or Infosys, but if he / she is working in a company with moderate reputation then this factor of too much stability should be worth of considerable analysis.

The Personality Factor – The personality of a Candidate can well gauged by involving him / her  in a one to one detailed  discussion along with some level of documentation prepared by the Candidate such as a business plan or a technical datasheet or white paper prepared by him / her. By interacting with a prospective candidate in detail for a maximum 20 -30 minutes it can be very well determined how articulate the Candidate is. The contents in his / her documentation will very aptly show if the Candidate is detail oriented, analytical and rational. By syncing the contents of documentation and his / her interaction a Recruiter can very well come to a logical conclusion on the suitability of a Candidate.

The Private Life Factor – One very important aspect of a successful Recruitment is to know how a Candidate is in his / her personal life. Since Recruiters are dealing with humans and not robots, it’s imperative to know what a Candidate does in his / her personal life and how he / she behaves socially. It’s best to engage him / her to deep delve in to his / her   personal life, uncovering any potential family issues, knowing about his / her social views without compromising privacy. Some more ways a candidate’s attitude and personal life can be known better by undertaking CIBIL and tax return checks, police and judicial verification, deeply analysing his / her social media profiles if publicly available, reference checks with his / her colleagues and higher ups. By analysing this cache of data the Recruiters can very well come to a conclusion on the success factor of a potential Recruit.

More the Candidate to be recruited is high profile, higher should be the level of checks and verifications to weed out any unwanted surprises after a Candidate is on boarded and substantial time and money is spent on the full exercise.

The five factors discussed above can definitely help an organization in mitigating risks associated with medium to high value hires. Off course this is not a holy grail in determining the competence of a prospective hire. Organizations can also mix their own Recruitment Modalities and processes along with these 5 factors in performing optimized Recruitment.

We will discuss more ways and means on how to on-board achievers & winners in our upcoming editions. Till then Happy Recruiting.

Financial & Value Analysis – Job Portal vs Placement Consultant from the Perspective of Client

Today Job Portals have become an excellent platform to find new candidates for employers. As there are no learning curves involved, it becomes quite easy for organizations of all sizes to work on job portals and find candidates with required qualification criteria.

There are multiple job portals including ones, which operate on niche areas of talent search. An SME organisation generally subscribes to 1 job portal which can be long term association or need based.

SME’s generally do not have high volume of recruitment compared to their larger counterparts and hence are more inclined to invest in moderate subscription charges. As it can be seen from the subscription figures above, obtained from a leading job portal, you can find that the number of CVs that can be accessed even with the highest monthly subscription of INR 25500 is around 2000 with one month validity. And each time a CV is accessed the number of CV access correspondingly gets reduced.

Also very few amount of postings can be done even with the highest subscription package. Yes, there are customised options also available for larger CV searches, but the costs will also be skyrocketing.

So an SME has to spend a decent sum of money for a sizeable number of CV access. Again a Team of trained professionals has to be deputed to do the CV search diligently keeping in mind the job requirements. The amount of time and effort the professional persons will spend will also have to be taken under consideration as a cost of recruitment. If the job role is tricky, then the costs of time and effort are bound to increase. In many SME organisations, in absence of trained recruitment professionals, goof ups happen during the process of candidate’s CV searching.

Moreover there are also lot efforts involved in writing proper job descriptions, multiple levels of interaction with the candidates, making the prospective candidate understand the value proposition involved with the proposed job roles and responsibilities and finally on boarding the candidate.
Unless a group of Professionally Educated & Experienced persons are involved in the entire process, expected results might not be achieved resulting in a wrong hire. And as we all know, trained and experienced professionals come with a cost.
And even after so much effort, an SME organisation is not sure that he had been able to locate the best talent for his needs.
In comparison to the above scenario, if an SME organisation hires a seasoned Recruitment Consultancy, they will not have to bear so much hassle. Let’s understand the reasons briefly:

  1. The placement agency will not limit itself just to the subscription of one job portal. They will have subscription to multiple job portals and even the niche ones. The agencies invest a large sum of money for the subscriptions and they can access huge number of CVs to the tune of lacs of candidates
  2. The recruitment agency will be connected with large number of professionals in Social Media and they will have a wider reach because of their connections and regular campaigns in leading professional Social Media sites Like Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter
  3. There will be a team of experienced people well versed with complex recruitment scenario to execute the entire chain of tasks starting from understanding the job requirement from the organisation till on-boarding of the candidate.
  4. Commitment to deliver on time resulting in faster on boarding
  5. If a candidate leaves the job within a stipulated period, the placement agency guarantees a free replacement
  6. As the leading recruitment consultancies handle complex recruitment scenarios and candidate profile, they are far more adept in gauging attitude of prospective employees to determine, whether they will fit the company culture
  7. Recruitment Consultants dig out quality talents who are passive candidates and are not found in job portals, or are not willing for a job change. A seasoned recruiter can convince him / her to switch jobs by highlighting the value proposition of the offered position resulting in high quality talent on boarding for your organisation

SME’s might have to shell out some amount of money to on board a trusted recruitment agency. But it’s worth every penny because you are leaving nothing to chance in making key hiring decisions.

How Can Organizations Recruit Without Bias

Employing the best talent is the most important aspect for any successful organization. Diversity in hiring and employment helps in making a strong team of highly talented professionals who can take up any sorts of challenge at work.

Research done by McKinsey reveals that highly diverse organizations are more profitable.

Well, Human beings are naturally biased about every aspects of life like food, dressing and parenting etc. But when it comes to HR profession and recruitment of the best talent then unbiased recruitment becomes the top priority.

Biased recruitment is a big challenge for the skilled and talented candidates and it also harms an organisation’s ability to respond to more complex stakeholder demands. In the realm of HR it affects not only who and how they recruit, but also why?

Recruiters may unintentionally align with candidates preferred interests or reject them due to preconceived notions about social status, caste, gender or ethnicity.HR professionals are doing their best to be impartial but are hampered by the nature of human experience.

Let’s have a look how Seasoned Recruiters follow the strategies of unbiased Recruitment:

Standardize interviews

Unstructured Interviews lack defined questions and due to that a candidate’s experience and expertise are not revealed organically through conversation and it leads to failure in job. On the other hand, Professional Recruiters follow structured Interviews, where a candidate is asked the same set of defined questions. It allows to “standardize the interview process” and “minimize the bias” by allowing Recruiters to “focus on the factors that have a direct impact on performance of the candidate. So, structured interviews are nearly twice as effective at predicting actual job performance.

Usage of Technology to Eliminate Bias

Based on what parameters it will be predicted that HR team is treating all resumes fairly as everyone in the department has their own personal bias? It all starts with name-blindness. Due to this reason some Recruiters have adopted a system where resumes can be submitted digitally or scanned into a software solution like ADP Recruiting Management’s new Visual Search, which then sorts the documents by skill rather than name, gender, age or ethnicity. By this type of recruiting tool, top candidates can be more easily identified, and by changing the targeted skill set recruiters can easily access different portions of the candidate pool.

Seek Help from Outside Experts

When it comes to unbiased recruitment, Organizations can seek advice from professionally trained Recruitment agencies who can guide them to:

• To organise awareness training to educate the employees regarding company values and ethics
• To do job posting in better way by highlighting stereotypically gendered words and verbs
• To organise work sample tests to judge the quality of the talented candidates
• To Control for personal feelings about a particular candidate by giving likability a numerical score
• To set up Effective pay systems for both Men and Women. It includes Strong policy to ensure that there is
no bias in pay and they are checked against a formalized policy.

Using Video Interview Process

Video Interviews with multiple participants can be helpful in removing bias from Recruitment. As video interviews are viewed by multiple people, and the presence of multiple people can act as a check-and-balance to inherent biases. This sort of interview gives indications about a job candidate’s attractiveness, accent, speech modulation and other characteristics. It can also be far more cost-effective than transporting job candidates for face to face interviews.

So, Companies with structured and well defined hiring process can avoid bias and can hire the best talent for the suitable post. Companies that try to eliminate those biases from their hiring processes are really benefitted from the economic and cultural advantages and can form a diverse workforce for the future.