Me- Tell me John, of the last 10 people you’ve hired in commercial roles, how many were still with you and performing after 12 months?
Me- Is that typical for your sales team?
CEO- Yes, I would say so. Sometimes we lose more, sometimes less. It’s always annoying, but I really don’t think a 70% success rate on our sales hiring is too bad!
Me- OK, that’s not unusual. Let’s look at it from the other side though, as what you’re telling me is that your selection process typically fails 30% of the time. Is that fair?
CEO- Hmmm. It’s always been about that level.
Me- Tell me John, where else in your business would you accept a 30% failure rate, and not do anything to put it right?
CEO- I wouldn’t.
Me- OK so I have to ask, why let it happen with your recruitment?
CEO- We work with a specialist recruitment agency, we do multiple stage interviews, get presentations, references and put a lot of hard work and time into assessing candidates. I don’t think we can do any more, can we?
Me- Could you do more? Honestly, yes, but the real question is whether or not it’s enough of an issue for you to want to put right. After all, you’ve lived with the problem for years, so why change now?
Me- Thinking about the people that left, when you employed them did you believe they had the right skills and experience?
CEO- Of course!
Me- So if you’re getting people with the right skills and experience, but still failing 30% of the time, something isn’t working. Perhaps your current process leaves some room for improvement?
CEO- Perhaps, I suppose.
Me- Have you ever thought about what this actually costs your business?
CEO- The recruitment fees aren’t too bad, though I admit we also get some disruption, a little commercial downtime during the interview process and inevitable unproductive periods as new hires get up to speed.
Me- John, I’m going to be blunt. Is that OK?
CEO- Go on.
Me- The bad news is it’s costing your business more than you think, and your current recruitment process is not doing your business any favors. In fact it’s dragging your business back.
Me- Am I OK to carry on?
CEO- Shoot, I’m still listening.
Me- My fear is, that until you see what your current recruitment process and the inevitable hiring mistakes it creates, is costing your business, you’re never going to want to change anything. You’ll keep tolerating a 30% failure rate and telling yourself it’s normal. More than likely we’ll speak again in a few years time, and nothing will have changed. You’ll still be making bad hires and your business will still be suffering the consequences.
Me- You won’t like this John, but if you’re serious about stopping the rot, the first step is to better understand the problem. May I suggest you take a look at our Bad Hire Calculator, then if you still want to put it right, let’s make time to speak.
Click here: Bad Hire Calculator