August 01, 2014
Yes, desperation can lead to hiring mistakes, but, more often, desperation guarantees mistakes will be made. Being desperate to hire someone is like going to the grocery store after you haven’t eaten for the last three days. Everything will look delicious --- even foods you don’t normally like.
When you’re hungry to hire someone, you’ll be more prone than usual to make the mistake of hiring a person who is a great applicant, but who will not be a great employee.
For example, let’s say you are in Houston in the summertime and you run an air conditioning service company and need another A/C technician. You get someone to apply for the job and your key interview question is: “When can you start?” The great applicant can start tomorrow because he is presently unemployed. On the other hand, a great employee will not be out of work. They may be looking for a better job, but the odds are they are working. And, because they’re a great employee, their response will be they will need to give notice to their employer.
Some ways to avoid desperation hiring:
1. Always be looking for your next potential employee. If you’re always recruiting, you’ll never be desperate.
2. Should you find yourself desperate, make sure you only hire people that have the potential to truly be great employees Don’t short circuit the system.
3. Remember: “Nobody” will always cost you a lot less than “anybody.”
4. Have a systematic employee retention program (especially with your key employees).