Team transformation – Fire well and hire well

How many of your company hires are considered successful after 18 months?

According to an article in Inc. published in September 2018 only 1 in 5 hires are considered successful after 18 months in post. 1 in 5 Hires are Unsuccessful The simple cost of that failure is enormous, but the complex cost of judging ROI reveals a truly terrifying waste of money.

The bad news is further exacerbated by the problems liable to be created in the team among the people who do deliver. A bad apple and all that…. People leave people not businesses typically and an unruly team member sets an example that is corrosive, brings down standards and makes turning a team around even harder. Standards set by poor hires can become entrenched and trying to convince a new hire that they can be the change that’s needed can be tough, especially if things have been heading South for some time.

So, two things: How do we deal with poor performers? And secondly… How do we hire great performers?

Firstly, we can rely on the three f’s:

Act fast – don’t let a situation bubble along causing aggravation. It’s easier said than done with probably powerful egos involved, vested interests, fear of getting it wrong and all the other reasons for not acting (we’ve all been there).
Be fair – Often the reasons for an underperformance are rooted in someone being in the wrong job so there’s a liability on the company too but in any case, treating individuals fairly is both the right thing to do and a sensible strategy to maintain credibility both internally and externally.
Be final – It’s tempting to leave the door ajar for a return when all the evidence (often repeated) points to a terminally failed employee…and it’s not fair to anyone to prolong the agony or live through it again for that matter. 2nd chances notwithstanding it’s often the case that failed employees are deeply unhappy and that moving on to pastures move will give them a new lease of life.

Secondly, how can companies avoid these mistakes in the first place. Let’s rely on the three P’s for that one:

Create sustainable Process – Design or adopt a process on which you can rely. That process should deliver measurable evidence of the behaviours and values that are typically successful along with a measurement of culture fit and skill sets. Set the weighting towards behaviours and values (attitude) as opposed to skill sets and qualifications and match them against others who have been successful in your business.
Deliver Proof – Gut feeling is a huge part of any human relationship and can’t be totally ignored but a feeling that completely overrides evidence is usually wrong. Recognise that everyone has preconceptions and that no-one is immune to bias in an interview process and weed it out through ensuring that proof is required as opposed to a subjective judgement call. Forbes Magazine’s article outlined it like this: When it Comes to Hiring Don’t Trust your Intuition
Take a Perennial approach – Hire for endurance not the start date. Where is this individual going to be in a year from now? What would we like them to be doing and what would they like to be doing? To promote from within you’ll need future leaders and experts. Is there evidence they can be that? Again, Forbes magazine put it like this: What Employers look for in Future Leaders

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