Wednesday, August 25, 2010

How To Know You Have The Right Person For The Job

Last week Mike and I agreed on a new process for hiring people: We're going to collect resumes from service people we run into who do a great job.

We just hired our new office manager. (Jennifer left after six years to work in her husband's business. Pshhh. What kind of loyalty is that?)

The woman we just hired works at the dry cleaners that I use. For more than five years she has greeted every client with a smile. She zips around totally in charge, appearing to do six things at once. She greets every single customer by name when they walk in the door. She has a great smile and a wonderful demeanor.

That didn't get her the job.

She called to verify the address yesterday. Then she drove to the office the night before to make sure she knew where it is. Then she showed up 20 minutes early for the appointment. She was sitting in her car when I pulled into the driveway.

That didn't get her the job.

As we were waiting for Mike, I said I was going to make coffee. So I gave her a quick tour of Great Little Book and KPEnterprises on the way to the kitchen. As I tossed out the old coffee grounds from yesterday, I noted that the garbage needed to be emptied.

I went down the hall to empty out the leftover coffee from the day before and rinse out the karafe. When I returned, she had scooped up the garbage, filled the bag with garbages from several workstations, and taken out the garbage to the dumpster.

Resourceful. Willing to work. Eager.

Believe it or not, that didn't get her the job.

Mike arrived and we interviewed her. Mike didn't know what had just happened. When she left, he said "WOW. She's the leading candidate so far." Why? Because it didn't seem like an interview. It was like a conversation.

This job involves a lot of dealings with clients, vendors, banks, state agencies, the landlord, etc. In other words: She needs to work well with people.

On a technical level, she's not the most experienced in the things we need her to do. But she's sharp and trainable.

On a personal level, she will be a great member of the team. She's got a huge smile and a great attitude. Our band of whackos will do well with her at the helm. The "interview" was like bringing in a friend for a chat.

Wish us luck. I hope she stays for at least six years.


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1 comment:

  1. I hope you guys warned her about the random Nerf Gun battles; it's only fair to let her know what she's up against...


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