An article by Oleg Vishnepolsky
I have heard so many times in the last 25 years – “this candidate does not fit into the role”.
Nobody fits exactly into anything. We are not square pegs to be fitted into square holes.
Most candidates get rejected for the wrong reasons.
“Does not fit” is one of the worst reasons. It says we do not believe a candidate can learn fast enough, adapt fast enough, be flexible enough. How do we determine that exactly ?
Of the worst reasons for rejection, it is the most cruel one. It sounds polite but tells the person you do not believe in their abilities to learn and adapt.
During an interview, you are not interviewing a person – you are interviewing your own ability to get this particular candidate to the level needed for the job.
I beg you, when you reject a candidate, please do not say s/he does not fit.
Please say instead, “I am not likely to be able to motivate this person and/or to get him/her to speed quickly”. If you put it like that, you may actually decide to give them and yourself a chance -a chance for yourself to do something really good.
I ask various questions on the interview. I hired a few people in the past several years that did NOT answer any of my questions. I saw a potential in each one of them. All of them did really well.
1) Many qualified people do not do well on interviews.
2) Answering theoretical question has very little to do with actual on the job performance.
3) Recognizing the potential is very difficult, but not impossible. I try to ask questions these days that go after the potential, in addition to skills and experience. I am trying to establish the willingness and ability to learn new things, creativity and adaptability. I am looking not only for the answer, but the way the person thinks and learns. It is not what you know, it is how you think – that matters most. One can have the skills, but ability to apply them in non standard situations is key.
In fact when you hire someone who did not do well on the interview, you are motivating them already. It is a very powerful motivational message.
If you have not read my related article, you really should – The best people will QUIT !
In particular, please pay attention to the notion of the temple. Once an employee knows what the temple is, the productivity rises many-fold.
A motivated employee can do so much and learn so much so quickly.
Do not hire the skills, hire the potential skills !
Better yet, hire a person, not a skill set.
Everyone deserves a chance.