Recruiting for Culture: becoming the employer of choice is the second blog of two. Company Culture was the first blog, which is here if you haven’t read it.
The premise for this blog is a friend asking, “What do you do if you can’t recruit for culture and you’re desperate to fill a vacancy”?
I’m going to break this into two halves,
- Why you should never recruit when you’re desperate.
- Using culture to become an employer of choice.
That’s the answer to number 1. An opportunity cost when faced with two mutually exclusive decisions is defined as the value given up when making one decision instead of another. The cost of making a bad employment decision is traded off with the cost of having a vacancy.
I’m going to be honest, I’ve recruited when desperate and I’ve paid. I’m going to lay out the cost of my vacancy and the cost of the poor recruiting decision so you can understand how I paid.
Cost of vacancy
- Sales revenue lost directly
- Failing customer relationships
- Personal impact of trying to manage my own job and do the “essential” bits of the vacant role too.
- Impact on the performance of my own role and pressure from my manager.
Cost of poor employment decision
- Revenue lost directly due to poor performance of the employee
- Failing customer relationship, including the loss of credibility for putting this employee in front of them.
- Cost, time, effort and stress of performance managing the employee
- Cost of exit strategy for the employee
The two are almost the same on paper, but believe me; the personal cost of performance management in time, stress and wellbeing, far exceeds the cost of a vacancy.
So how do you get it right? How do you become the employer of choice? Well, that’s part 2.
Culture, culture and a rock solid, proven recruitment plan.
If you have a great company culture, your team, clients and friends will have been extolling its virtues already. It happens organically and word of mouth is still the most powerful business tool in the box. It’s just we do it digitally these days. Internal culture with your team is now exactly equal to external culture with your consumers, or at least it should be, because of the transparency and immediacy brought about by social media. Double that impact because we exist in a small profession where everyone knows everyone and you’re only 2 steps away from some who know how good or bad your business is.
Get your culture right and you won’t just have clients, you’ll have advocates. Get it wrong and everyone will know. So consider this:
- What do your EMS students say about you? Well, back at vet school that could be at least 150 people who know you and you’ve never even met.
- What do your trainee nurses says about you when they’re at college? Ok, there are another 50 people who know you.
- What do your clients say about you and how you look after their pets or animals? That’s thousands of people!
You’re looking for Love at First Sight. You’re crafting Loyalty. That’s what your culture should do for you and that culture will travel further than you think. If you have a great culture, you become an employer of choice and people will know about it. The right people will want to be part of your culture and therefore your business.
So how does your culture help you become the employer of choice?
People with shared values gravitate towards you
Having a common platform of beliefs and values to work together with is rocket fuel for your business.
Your jobs become aspirational
People really want to work for or with your business! The news will travel fast and people will be looking for the opportunity to contact you. Many will spontaneously contact you in advance. Nurture these contacts; they will bear fruit in the future.
Your culture will spill out into everything you do
Culture and your mission become the flavours of your business, but you’ll have to work really hard to select for a good cultural fit. Passion and enthusiasm for your mission is a prerequisite for any prospective employee, but ensuring your next employee has the right cultural fit becomes just as important. Skills can be trained, but changing beliefs, attitudes and values is very difficult. That puts increased emphasis on a solid recruiting process.
Have a think about your business. Are you an employer of choice? Can you describe your culture and, if so, would your team agree with you? We can help you organize your thoughts and design a roadmap to cultural success, so drop us a line.
For another blog
Recruiting is a massive topic so we will revisit it in another blog. There are many steps to creating a solid, proven recruiting plan, but it essentially boils down to three elements
- Precisely plan your recruiting, from person specification and job description, right through to the end of your on-boarding process and probationary period.
- Have a multistage, objective interview process.
- Prepare and implement a stellar on-boarding process. Hiring only finishes when the new employee is at full performance.
The people you employ have to be as passionate about their mission as you are and they have to be the right cultural fit.