What to look for in your new employees

 In HR

A LinkedIn connection of mine has recently changed her tagline to ‘People Over Resumes’—that pretty much nails it when it comes to employing your team.

So what do we look for in a good employee?

Does it matter if they don’t have an MBA for example, but can do the job, are willing to work hard and intelligently, and fit in with the culture of your organisation? These things are important, but one thing the best employees can do is tap in to both sides of their brain.

The problem is that we have become such a left brain dominant society. Check out Iain McGilchrist’s book, The Master and His Emissary, if you are unsure. It is scary that as we pursue the same path we have been doing, the left brain is physiologically encroaching into the right brain’s space. (The creatives are being squeezed out!) The ability to think creatively first, then develop a logical result is an important and desirable skill.

When you approach business from a purely logical perspective, it spells disaster.

Goodness, I would have never started any of the businesses I founded, built up, and sold over the years if I had approached it in that fashion. The long hours, frustrations, months when there was more month than money—from a purely logical standpoint, it didn’t make sense. That was my personal ‘MBA’, and qualified me in part for the work I have been doing for the last ten years or so.

Einstein is an interesting study. After he died, they cut him up and weighed his brain, thinking it must be larger than the average American’s. It wasn’t. (It was actually smaller than average.) It left many puzzled for many years, until someone recognised that the link between his left and right brain was very well developed. In other words, not only was he able to think creatively, but he was then able to turn the idea into a logical result. Good old corpus callosum in Einstein’s brain was very well developed.

Many of his thoughts have been repeated over the years but the one that really resonates with me is his saying “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world, stimulating progress, giving birth to evolution.”

That translates in many ways to the workplace. If you put a predominantly left-brainer in charge of driving sales, it spells disaster. Likewise, if you put a sales-oriented manager in charge of intricate accounts for days on end, not only will they become frustrated and distracted, but their results will be sloppy. I know that you may say “Oh, but I know an exception to that”, and while this is a generalisation, there is more than an ounce of truth in it.

Making the right hiring decisions will decrease your staff turnover, improve your team’s performance, and help you avoid expensive mistakes.

If you need the right people in the right seats, get in touch now!

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