Bringing in the wrong members to your management team, whether you promote from within or bring in an outside hire, can have disastrous results. When managers fail to maintain accountability or communicate effectively with employees, it has a ripple effect throughout your organization and can cost you multiple accounts.
To stop this from happening, it’s important to ask the right questions during the hiring process. That means going beyond the generic, standard interview questions and getting into a real conversation about how the applicant would fit on your team. Here are a few questions you can ask to more accurately judge the suitability of potential managers.
How Would You Describe Our Company?
This question is best for if the candidate has come to you, rather that if it’s someone you’re actively recruiting. In that situation, of course, you want to define the image of your company in their minds to give the best possible impression.
However, if you are trying to choose between a number of candidates, this can be a great question to decide how serious someone is about the job and whether they share your mission. An un-serious candidate might give you a generic answer, while someone that really wants to work for you will have taken the time to research your company and understand your specific value proposition.
“Hiring someone that’s not totally engaged will be a problem that you will have to deal with month after month, week after week,” said Johnny on today’s episode. This question can filter out those who are engaged with those that just view it as another job.
As a follow-up, you can ask candidates about what specific role they see for themselves in the company. Their answer here will show not just that they’ve researched your company but that they can see themselves as a contributing part of the team.
The Layover Test
No matter how qualified and engaged a manager is, ultimately you need to have some level of personal compatibility. You’re going to be working in close quarters, and you have to get along with them and be able to communicate effectively.
As a test, after the interview, imagine being stuck on extended layover with the candidate. You don’t have to be excited by the idea, but if the idea of spending a few hours alone with this person fills you with dread, how do you think you’re going to manage working with them day in and day out year after year?
Try to get input from other team members as well. A lot of people in your organization will have to work with this person, so make sure there are no obvious personality conflicts before you hire them.