The Olympics have wrapped up and our athletes did us proud once again. Plenty of medals, many of them with that golden shimmer.
I start this article with the games because I’d like you to consider the process behind them for a minute. Specifically, the process of getting the right athletes in place to represent the U.S.A. If you think about it, the most important thing Olympic leaders do is find and train the best people. They spend years and years doing that. Searching, selecting, training, honing skills, preparing them to perform at the highest possible levels.
In the world of real estate, clearly one of the most important aspects of your job (especially if you’re a broker, but also if you’re an agent looking for an assistant) is to hire the right person.
I know of where I speak. I used to be an executive recruiter. I’ve come to believe that having the right people in the right position is the single most important job of any leader in business or any organization for that matter. A slogan I still use to this day is, “Hire slow and fire fast.” It’s served me well over the years and I think it’ll help you, too – along with these tips:
- Plan ahead. This is part of the “slow” part in hiring. It begins by spending a lot of time on the specifics of exactly what you need a prospective employee to do. The more you know on the front end: how much you’ll pay them, the must-have skills, the kinds of experience they’ll need, etc., the better prepared you’ll be to find the right person to fill the slot.
- Consider the source. To find the right person, you need to think carefully about the sources you’ll tap to get names of prospective employees. I often recommend talking to those in the industry (and the affiliate industries such as mortgage companies, builders, etc.) to solidify your relationships with them. They also understand the real estate game pretty well.
- Think carefully about the interview questions. Again, taking time with these is key. Something to consider is getting candidates to share real experiences versus hypotheticals. So, instead of asking, “What would you do if …” go with, “Tell me about a time when you …” Use “behavior-based interviewing” that considers past behavior as the best predictor of future performance. E-mail me at Article@CorcoranCoaching.com and I’ll send you – free – some of the best interview questions you can ask.
- Don’t put a lot of weight on the resume. I’ve hired many, many people in my career and you know what, I’ve only seen a handful of bad resumes. They’re rare. Why? Because it’s easy to find someone to write them. Personally, I think the most important thing on a resume is the names of the references. Check them, always. And besides the standard questions of work ethic and character, probe deeper by finding out they consider the candidate’s weaknesses are, or if they were to fail, why that might be.
Trust me, interviewing and hiring is a crucial task because the right person can be your best asset and the wrong person can be your worst liability. Follow these tips and you just might find yourself on your way to the medal stand!
Let me hear from you? How have your past hires worked out for you? Do you see any trends in past employees you’ve hired, either good or bad? How much importance do you attach to hiring? Please send any comments or questions you have to Article@CorcoranCoaching.com or http://www.facebook.com/CorcoranCoaching.
Bob Corcoran is a nationally recognized speaker and author who is founder and president of Corcoran Consulting Inc. (CorcoranCoaching.com, 800-957-8353), an international consulting and coaching company that specializes in performance coaching and the implementation of sound business systems into the residential or commercial broker or agent’s existing practice.
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