Recruitment rules: Long hellos and short goodbyes

Rarely does love at first sight last. Similarly, the instant (well, two-minute) decision to employ a new recruit is likely to end in disaster for all parties. 

The “long courtship” and “trial by assessment” approach for new graduate positions works better: it doesn’t necessarily guarantee longevity but it does give both sides a better idea of how this relationship may work out in the longer term. 

Recruitment is an expensive exercise, not just in terms of recruitment fess but in terms of your time involved in the process, the learning curve for the newbie, and the general disruption everyone goes through when a new team member arrives. 

The lesson? Get it right from the start.

Likewise, if it’s clearly not working, a swift exit for all parties works much, much better.

Here are my recruitment tips (learned the hard way!):

1) Recruit on cultural fit

2) Find a mentor or a “buddy” to support all new recruits from day one 

3) Set and agree strategic milestones (to which both parties happily sign up) BEFORE the employment starts

4) Don’t break promises and don’t accept breaks 

5) Don’t over hype any opportunity and be crystal clear about all the downsides 

6) Don’t judge too quickly but neither should you procrastinate indefinitely 

7) Have garden leave clauses in all your contracts 

8) Don’t listen to office politics

Jo Haigh is head of corporate finance for Corporate Finance Services. She can be contacted on 01274 868 958/07850 475878 or at Jo.haigh@corpfinservices.co.uk

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