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Hiring the Golden Unicorn Part 4: The Recruiting Process

“The key asset to a business – the only one that provides a sustainable and competitive advantage – is its employees, their skills and their dedication.” 

~ Robert Reich, Former US Labor Secretary.


To wrap up this four part series on hiring that person you can trust – your Golden Unicorn – let’s talk about putting all the pieces together into your Golden Unicorn Recruiting Process.

1. Clarity

In part one of this series we discussed how to find your key talent by first having a greater understanding of your personal and your business vision, mission, values, company structure, strengths and weaknesses. You must first understand yourself and what you really need before you can begin the process of finding the person who can fill those needs. I tell my clients consistently – clarity is the first key to success.

2. Components

In part two we discussed the components you need to think about when creating or filling the position, including the competencies, qualifications, and brain style needed for the position. In addition to all the factors listed in the post, another element you should calculate are the costs associated with hiring a new person. Think of the cost of recruiting, training, salary and benefits, workplace integration (buying their office equipment, supplies, bonding with the group, etc.). The “accepted” bottom line is that the “fully-baked” costs of an employee is 1.5 to 3 times their salary. This sounds like a lot! So, compare that higher cost with the cost of the pain you have by not having someone in that role.

3. Questions

In part three we talked about the interview itself and how to ask the questions that require them to show you their thinking process rather than pat answers. Your behavioral based questions are what are called Open-Ended Questions. It enables the person to choose how much and what to tell you. You should also have a few Closed-Ended Questions (those requiring a yes/no, right/wrong, black/white, decisive answers). You want a balance of these so you get a real sense of their thinking patterns and their ability to be decisive and concise as well. Also, be aware of which questions you CAN’T ask as well – nationality, religion, age, marital/family status, gender, etc. Here is an article from HRWorld on 30 Interview Questions You Can’t Ask that may give you some clarity.

4. Champion

Once you’ve developed your job related hiring process; focused on the skills, competencies and behaviors required to succeed; used a job description as your guide; prepared for each interview; used behavioral interviewing – please make sure you follow up by checking their references! This will finalize the hiring you’re your Champion, your Golden Unicorn.

If you haven’t attracted the right candidates using these steps, take a step back and see if you’re the problem. Jeff Haden, an Inc. Magazine Contributing Editor, wrote an article about the 5 Reasons Hiring Processes Never Attract the Best People (Like You). It’s about the obstacles you put in place that are off-putting to those Golden Unicorns.

So, now that you’re the solution (instead of the problem) you know what direction your company is going in; you know what type of talent you really need; you know what type of skills sets they need for the work; you know how much it will cost and have set a budgeting forecast; you have created a workable recruiting process to find the Golden Unicorns – the Ideal Candidates; then you have created your hiring plan.

What is the best part of your current attracting, interviewing, and hiring the right person for the job? Share with us!