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Hire for cultural fit, train for the right IT skills

Sharon Florentine | April 3, 2014
Hiring for the right cultural fit can be more important than focusing on technical skills alone and can help companies improve employee retention, engagement and loyalty.

The second E, for Empathetic, simply means treating others as you want to be treated, to work more effectively as a team, Hoover says. Active listening and constantly 'putting yourself in another's shoes' are key elements of empathy, he says.

"We care about this because of the implications for communication. At a foundational level, that requires mutual respect, and that's based on empathy," he says. Finally, the R is for Remarkable. Being remarkable, Hoover says, involves being recognized for being exceptional but also humble.

"We want our people to be exceptional in their own right, but also to seek out others and learn from them. It's hard enough to find remarkable people, but the 'humble' part of it involves the recognition that there are so many things you don't know, and then finding a mentor or teacher to help you learn those things," he says.

Throw Out the Resume
A June 2013 Gallup poll of more than 150,000 U.S. workers found that a whopping 70 percent of respondents either hated their jobs or felt disengaged, and of the main reasons cited, "poor management" and "poor cultural fit" were at the top of the list.

Sean Storin, CEO and co-founder of recruiting and networking site One Degree, says these statistics are what prompted him and his team to develop One Degree to address the staggering number of bad hires and try to identify better employees based on culture, mission and values, he says.

"We'd heard that something like 89 percent of people leave a job because they're not happy. Even if that statistic is overblown, even if it's only 50 percent, that's an epidemic," he says, "And it's as bad for the employees as it is for business."

One Degree is an online career network that claims to place culture, values and mission above all else when matching candidates and potential employers, Storin says. The site does not include resumes, nor does it include job postings; instead, he says, candidates sign up and answer questions based around cultural categories to find companies and roles that would best fit for their interests, values and their lifestyle.

There are three distinct ecospheres that lead to good hiring, Storin says, what a candidate knows, how the candidate lives and what the candidate wants.

"The 'How I Live' piece outlines the type of personal values a candidate has, and how that translates into their fit into your organization. And the 'What I Want' piece is an opportunity to express exactly what would make candidates happy in a work environment. The last piece is extremely important, and it's something candidates are not often faced with — it's empowering for them to have this be a major part of the hiring conversation," Storin says.

 

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