Screening and Hiring Employees

3/5/2009 - All of us have had the experience of hiring a person we were sure would be a good employee, only to be disappointed once the person came to work, and we have asked ourselves, “Isn’t there some way to make sure we hire good employees?” While there is no guarantee when it comes to hiring decisions, there are some things you can do to increase your odds of success. When you examine candidates for employment, you look for a person with (a) good qualifications and experience, (b) good character and who is a good “fit” for your organization. Thus, the 3 areas where management can best measure an applicant’s potential for success at work are:

1. Past Performance, Qualifications and Experience – The best predictor of future performance is past performance. If a person has the qualifications and experience for the job and has been successful in the past, the odds for success in the future are very good. Similarly, if a person has had a checkered past at work, the odds for future success are low. This step includes checking (a) previous employers, (b) drivers records (for employees who drive), (c) credit history (for employees who handle money or items of value) and (d) criminal records (local, state and federal). We also recommend a drug screen.

2. Character – Of these 3 areas, character is the toughest one to measure. Character is that inner essence that determines what a person believes and how he or she behaves. Character speaks to issues of honesty, integrity, dependability, truthfulness and loyalty. Discerning character requires a certain keenness of judgment which we exercise through observation, experience and the opinions of others who know the person. But remember Sandy’s First Rule of Leopardology – “A leopard doesn’t change his spots.” That is, issues of character, for the most part, do not change.

3. Working Style – Working style determines how a person behaves at work, in terms of dominance, interpersonal skills, focus on task and attention to detail, and working styles do not change. Most of us are characterized by one primary and one secondary style:

a. Hard charging, Choleric, Type A, energized and motivated by accomplishment, achievement and “getting it done.” They make good managers and supervisors.

b. Sanguine, motivated and energized by being around other people. They are good in customer relations, patient care and sales.

c. Phlegmatic, motivated and energized by “getting along” with others on the job and are highly dependable. They make good small department management or special projects workers.

d. Perfectionistic, motivated and energized by “getting it right.” They are good at jobs requiring close attention to detail, such as information management, accounting, finance and many medical positions.

If you can identify the working style of a candidate, you will go a long way toward predicting the odds of success on the job and of hiring the “right person.” The diagnostic tool that Seay Management recommends and uses is the DISC profile. We never make an employment decision without it and we use it specifically to help resolve issues of employee conflict. In our opinion, the DISC profile is the single most important screening and hiring tool that you can use because it helps you look “beyond the vale” and determine if a person will be a good “fit,” in terms of skill set, culture, working style and job satisfaction. For example, if you are looking for a sales person, you want a candidate with a good dose of Sanguine. An applicant who is a Choleric, Type A would be a good candidate for President or top management, while a Manager of Information Technology or Office Manager or Financial Manager should have a Perfectionistic profile. To the contrary, hiring a Sanguine in an accounting or data processing position would not be a good “fit.” Why? Because Sanguines like to talk and tell stories, while an accounting position requires focus on the job, close attention to detail, working with numbers, and pinpoint accuracy.

Seay Management can help you make good employment decisions, by taking the knowledge and expertise you have about your organization and combining it with these three employment principles. We recommend that you have Seay Management administer the DISC profile to every candidate you are considering for a key position. We’ll analyze the results and give you a comprehensive, insightful report, and you’ll make better employment decisions immediately.

Do you have one or more employees who can’t get along? The DISC profile is a major part of the answer. We can use the power of the DISC profile, plus Seay Management experience and expertise, to help you resolve employee conflict. In addition, many employers use the strength of the DISC profile as an entertaining, enjoyable and productive team building exercise that develops confidence and promotes understanding and cohesiveness among your management team. If you will email Sandy today at, we’ll provide you with all the information you need to make good employment decisions, resolve conflict and build your management team. The DISC profile is the Most Important Management Tool you can use.

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