The reason why organisations fail can be traced to the
leadership within the organisation. In Africa, for example, most institutions
struggle to bring in leadership based on merit. Patronage is a key factor when
hiring in most African businesses. In
this article, I will highlight some of the processes you need to hire the best
First here are the processes you need to have:
- Develop the right job
profiles based on objective information. The profile needs to reflect what you
need from a successful person going into that role. Never use generic job
profiles when hiring your executive team.
- Use better selection
methods such as psychometric tests and assessment centres. If you look at the
top companies globally, they all use psychometric tests and assessments centres
for leadership selection. Once you have finished shortlisting candidates based
on strict criteria, do not interview candidates who have not gone through
psychometric tests. It is a complete waste of your resources to interview
candidates who for example have no cognitive ability for the role they are
going into. Remember general mental ability is the biggest and most efficient
predictor of job performance. Over and above this check for personality
defects. There are brilliant individuals, who are technically gifted to have a
horrible personality that will destroy your organisation.
- Do not bend your
selection criteria to accommodate candidates who do not meet the criteria. Once
you start this process you set a precedent.
- Be fair and transparent
in your hiring process so that you gain the confidence of the market. That
confidence will help you attract the best candidates for roles in your
- If in doubt do not hire.
The danger with hiring is that its easy to do but very difficult to terminate non-performers
in most instances.
- During the interview let
the candidates that all they are giving as answers especially where factual
information is required, you will verify that information through reference
- Never do reference checks
based on the people listed by the candidate on the CV. It is likely those
people will overlook the negatives in the candidate. There are various other
ways of doing reference checks.
When hiring avoids hiring people with the following traits,
especially for leadership roles:
- Self-centred individuals
– such individuals are likely to be corrupt and will make decisions in their
self-interest. They are also likely to start to bring in close friends and
colleagues from outside the organisation to build their power base.
- People who think they
have all the others to all problems. Collaborative individuals are likely not
to have all the others. Anyone who through your objective assessments present
themselves as having all the answers to your problems will give you problems in
the long run.
- Avoid taking people who
over-promise. It is likely, such individuals may not deliver. Go for people who
are practical and realistic.
- Avoid hiring overly
aggressive people. Such people may have seriously personality defects. Remember
personality is a permanent disposition and it hardly changes over an
individual’s lifetime. Once they are in your organisation you are stuck with
them for good.
- Avoid people who agree
with anything a superior says. They are likely to let problems go unreported as
long as a superior is involved. You want to hire people we can exercise
- Do not hire people who
desperate to please people. They are likely to tell you to want to hear even if
things are going in the wrong way. You should hire people who can acknowledge
shortcomings early before bigger damage is done to your business.
The above guidelines will assist you when hiring leaders but
remember the list is not exhaustive.
Memory Nguwi is an Occupational
Psychologist, Data Scientist, Speaker, & Managing Consultant- Industrial
Psychology Consultants (Pvt) Ltd a management and human resources consulting
firm. https://www.linkedin.com/in/memorynguwi/ Phone +263 4
481946-48/481950/2900276/2900966 or cell number +263 77 2356 361 or email: email@example.com or visit
our website at www.ipcconsultants.com