When you are looking to hire someone for your company, the personality of the individual plays an important part. But many business owners fail to realize the importance of this crucial fact and end up hiring the wrong people for the job. In my own career, I have come across many hiring managers who have never looked beyond the skill set and qualifications of candidates until they face the consequences of a wrong hire.
Ignoring the personality type of your candidates results in short- as well as long-term effects, and almost all of them are unfavorable for your business. When you hire an individual to work for you, they bring to your workplace a different persona. It’s your job to find out whether that persona fits in with the values, attitude and behavioral requirements of your business or not. You can’t just say that anyone will do as long as they have the right qualifications and experience!
What if you hire someone who has the perfect resume and test scores, but has a nasty habit of blaming others every time you find something wrong with their work? Such people not only cost you money but also are detrimental to the growth of your business. If your employees are not going to acknowledge their mistakes to improve and grow, how is your business supposed to do so?
Here are some of the major consequences of hiring the wrong personality type:
The Blame Game
This is in relation to the first example as discussed above. Normally, people who like to play victims blame others for their problems. Ever heard of “The sales team got back to me after the deadline, so it’s because of them that we are behind schedule”, or “Why does the boss always have a problem with me?”
If you hire people who have the victim syndrome, your workplace will radiate negativity sooner or later. Such individuals always blame others for every single thing that’s going wrong in their lives. Their attitude and behavior will influence other employees and pretty soon the negativity will be all around, lowering the morale and causing emotional distress.
So when you are interviewing candidates, keep an eye out for the victims. You can identify them by asking questions like, “How do you grow professionally? Tell us about a problem that you solved at your previous firm?” or you can ask point-blank,
“What do you think of people who blame others for their mistakes/problems?”
If you weren’t careful while interviewing the candidate and didn’t ask the right questions, you might end up with pessimists. Such people always find something bad about any piece of good news that you deliver.
“Hey! Did you hear? We landed that huge client!”
“Really? But isn’t he really finicky? We will probably work more than we have to on other clients.”
And just like that, acquiring a huge client won’t be looked forward to. Such an employee will spread pessimism in the team and before you know it, you will have employees asking to not work on that client.
This is just one scenario. There are so many other things that might go wrong if you hire a pessimistic individual.
Narcissists are the root cause of team trouble. Being one of the dangerous personality types, narcissists are careless about commitments, manipulate others in the office and refuse to learn from their mistakes. They don’t get along with anybody and value their opinion above everyone else’s. Such people don’t fit well in teams and neither do they make good managers. They don’t take advice and disregard the opinions of others.
But the problem is; narcissists ace interviews! They will be charismatic and self-confident during the interview, almost always leading to a wrong hire. But if you go prepared, you can spot the red flags and save yourself some team trouble by looking out for signs of cockiness. In the interview, ask them about working in teams. Do they make discouraging remarks about their team or their sole focus is on their own abilities?
There is good competition, and then there is bad competition. Progress, growth, and development come out of good competition. But bad competition leads to bad blood and low productivity. People who have an attraction for the spotlight are the cause of this bad competition. They rant all day long and up-scale every tiny thing they do. Whatever you say, they will always have done something more difficult, challenging and nerve-wracking than you ever did.
“I am so glad that I am done with this report! I have been working on it for ages.”
“That’s nothing! You won’t believe the client I just had to deal with today. I would rather do your report.”
People who make out their work to be better than others stir a feeling of resentment and inferiority among others. It might be that the client was never that difficult and the report was nerve-wracking, but the other employee would end up feeling discouraged and inferior.
Like it or not, there are people who are responsible to take the morale of a team to an all-time low. Social loafers are people who are inherently lazy when it comes to working in teams. For small businesses, it is more problematic because every employee counts. Such individuals make others do their work for them and possess an aggressive and passive attitude in the workplace. Other team members begin to resent them as they don’t do their share of the work.
You can spot this kind of personality type during interviews by assessing their energy levels. Look at their body language and posture when they walk in and answer questions. You can even take them out for a cup of coffee during the interview to delve into greater depth. It’s a smart way to get them moving and see if they are able to keep up with you.
You can probably relate to all these consequences as you would have come across a situation where you made a wrong hire and the candidate was not a cultural fit. I have seen this mistake repeated over time in my career and the main reason behind this is that “Personnel issues typically stem from the fact that we often hire for competence instead of culture.” So do consider the personality types of candidates before making the final decision – it will be worth it!