Why Interview Training May be a Start-Up’s Best Investment

One of the most important steps a startup business can take is to hire the right individuals to staff their company. Because selecting good people from the get-go is now considered a key component to any new company’s survival and success, many businesses now provide hiring managers with information, training and tools to help them make the right choices.

Get It Right the First Time

Why is hiring the right people so critical? It is important because the interview and hiring process is very costly on many different levels. Initially, it takes time and money to recruit, interview, and mentor any new employee. If the right person isn’t found the first time around, then the company must then repeat this expensive process again for a replacement.

There are other serious problems as well. While searching for a new employee, resident staff members will need to fill in until satisfactory personnel is found and trained. In addition, new hires usually take about 6 months to acclimate to their positions, so they cannot fully perform their jobs duties during that period of time. While they are in training, seasoned employees must cover the part of the job they can’t handle. Because they must also perform the duties of their own job, they become less productive overall. The fallout from the extra workload can lead to dissatisfaction, and they could end up looking for a new job.

Recognizing a Good Fit

Many startups fail because they don’t recognize the significance of finding a good fit for each specific job in the company. Instead, they focus on big-name schools, fancy awards, and celebrated honors that have nothing to do with their business.  

How did Google avoid those types of pitfalls?  Not long after they started their business, Google began developing an interview model and strategy that they still use today. During interviews, they always ask skill-based questions to learn how a candidate will benefit their company. For example, they ask their candidates to solve problems that directly relate to their business. And, they interview candidates multiple times to learn how they will use their skills, personalities, and talents to help them reach their goals.

Hiring Tips for Startups

How can startup companies make their first hires effective? When starting a business, the best thing a business can do is to hire a like-minded, trustworthy founding team that has complementary skill sets. Once the core group is in place, the next step is to hire other talented people who share the founders’ vision and dreams.

Companies are encouraged to proceed carefully, and to avoid hiring any new employees unless absolutely sure they are needed. In addition, ensuring that hiring personnel completely understand the duties, scope and goals of each position to be filled is critical. It is also wise to have advisors and investors use their resources and experience to recommend and evaluate quality candidates.

Along with experience, look for passion about the business and a shared vision, with a focus on how the candidate can contribute to and grow with the company. Make sure they have the ability to adapt, innovate, communicate, and fit in with the company’s culture. And, look for indications that the candidate is willing to work hard, both individually and with other team members. 

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