The Smart Techie was renamed Siliconindia India Edition starting Feb 2012 to continue the nearly two decade track record of excellence of our US edition.

July - 2008 - issue > Entrepreneur

The Art of Hiring Great Employees

Gunjan Sinha
Tuesday, July 1, 2008
Gunjan Sinha
There are many schools of thought on how to hire great employees for your business or organization. You want to hire employees that make you proud, who deliver to the organization’s success, and are fun to be with while necessitating little or no effort on the part of every one in the team to get along with. Hiring great people is the essence of building a great organization – one employee at a time.

So how does one hire, right? How do you go through the interview process to find employees who you want to hire and the ones who you want to reject? Over the years, I have followed a five step criteria to look for great employees. If you are able to apply these during the interview process, you will more likely be making the right hire for your organization or startup!

Criterion 1: Aptitude
You are looking for basic aptitude in the candidate. All that is good if the person is very smart, or intelligent, or has a number of advanced degrees, but these are not critical for making a successful hire. Degrees and the ability to solve logic puzzles point to a raw aptitude and intelligence. You need to see some of that in the prospective hire, but you have to be careful not to over emphasize aptitude in your hiring decision process. A number of entrepreneurs and managers get impressed by strong aptitude alone, and forget to look into other critical elements that make a successful hire. Aptitude is necessary, but is not an automatic selection criterion.

Criterion 2: Drive
Over the years, I have made lots of hiring mistakes, and one thing common amongst all of them have been when candidates lacked basic self-motivated drive to excel and win in the marketplace. ‘Drive’ is an internal motivator, which inspires you to win in the world leaves your mark and legacy on what you do, and sustains you during difficult times to persevere. You need employees who are self driven. So, your hiring process must be designed to identify people and candidates who are strongly self-driven. Folks who are on a mission to change their careers, make an impact in the organization, prove themselves, or simply make the world a better place! Let us emphasize on ‘drive’ as a strong selection criterion over just raw intelligence or aptitude.

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