A training program is an important aspect of any business. It makes the transfer of knowledge from one individual to many possible, and it ensures that knowledge is growing within the organization. The question many business leaders ask is, “How do we develop an effective training program?” To start, you must develop an effective hiring program. If you hire the right people, then training becomes easier. So, what are the essential elements of a hiring program?
Keys to Hiring the Right People
When hiring people into your organization you should do the following:
- Hire people who fit the strategic needs of the business
- Hire people who are resourceful learners
- Hire people who have the ambition to advance in the organization
Hire for Strategic Fit
Hiring new employees should always start with clarity about what your organization needs. The time you spend thinking about your hiring strategy is the most valuable time you will spend in the whole process. If you short this effort, you will end up hiring with a nearsighted perspective. You will hire people who fit in general but create little strategic value. You will hire people looking for a job and a paycheck, not a career and growth opportunities.
To hire for strategic fit:
- be specific about the position for which you are hiring
- understand how that position contributes to your growth strategy
- determine what position you want that person to fill next in their career path
This last point is critical. Don’t just hire someone to fill the immediate need. Ask yourself, “what future needs will I have that I want this new person to grow into?” Once you answer that question, hire for the skill necessary to do today’s job. But also hire for the aptitude necessary to grow into the future role.
Hire Resourceful Learners
When we talk about aptitude the trait that comes to mind quickest is resourcefulness. In almost every interview I ask what I consider to be a critical question. “If I asked you to do something that you didn’t know how to do and no person was available to show you how, what would you do?”
I get all sorts of answers, but by far the best one is this. “I Google it.” I believe this is the best answer because it points to a natural resourcefulness. When someone gives me this answer, I know that I’m talking to a learner. But not just any ordinary learner. This is a learner who will seek out the knowledge necessary to grow.
This person won’t wait to be told or taught. They won’t give up and blame others for their inability to get the task done. Instead, this person will seek out knowledge. They will develop their skills, and they will grow.
This person will, by their nature as a resourceful learner, become more valuable to the organization. In turn, they will grow into the future roles your strategic plan requires.
Hire People with Ambition
Ambition in the workforce is a desire to gain more responsibility and the rewards that go with it. Resourceful learners are ambitious. Ambitious people are not always resourceful learners. Stay away from them. They will cause you loads of grief.
Resourceful learners, because of their ambition, will build most of your training program themselves. They will seek to develop the skills necessary to advance. You just need to show them the career path. They will also do something else if you ask them. They will document the requirements, record for others how to do their job, and train their replacements.
Do you see it? We started out looking for a training program that would ensure knowledge transfer. To get there we built a hiring strategy. Hire the right people, and much of the training will happen on its own. Got any hiring tips of your own? Please share them with us in the comments below.