hire for personality

Hire for Personality, Not Skill

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You’ve heard the saying before, “hire for personality, train for skill” but how true is it? Are you really supposed to overlook skill in favor of a candidate’s character traits? Yes, and no.

This doesn’t mean hire someone with no skill whatsoever…it means that if the least qualified applicant has a personality that outshines all the others, and is eager to learn and grow, considering hiring him or her for their personality instead of for their skill.

Here’s why…

Skills can be trained, personality…not so much

Depending on the type of job you’re hiring for, you can always train someone to do the job right. It’s a time-consuming commitment but it’s worthwhile. You might actually find it beneficial to hire someone with a clean slate. They can learn your company’s standards and not have to unlearn a past employer’s way of doing things.

Personality on the other hand is pretty much hardwired. Yes, people can learn, grow and adapt to new environments but it’s not your job to change someone’s personality. It’s much easier to train for skill than reshape behavior.

Compatibility fosters a work environment where everyone thrives

When you hire someone, they become part of an established team. That means you have to consider the health of the team and not just your new hire’s ability to do his or her job. Hiring someone with a compatible personality makes collaboration easy, keeps your team strong and employee morale high.

Hiring for personality = lower turn-over rate

The greatest threat to a company is a toxic work environment. Why? Because you’ll never be able to retain employees. It cost time, money, and effort to find, hire and then train a new employee every few weeks or month. Hiring for personality makes it easier to create a work environment where people genuinely like each other and get along. Employees tend to stick around when they like their company.

In conclusion

Yes, skill is important but so is personality and, in some cases, more important. Because the reality is, who you hire affects the whole team. You have duty to your current employees to find someone who will compliment and strengthen the team and not destroy it. Remember…it only takes one bad apple to spoil the bunch.


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Tags: Business Owner, compatibility, employee morale, Employees, hiring, hiring tips, office team, small business


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