The major red flags during the hiring process include:
Candidate does not mention past failures
Candidate exaggerates answers
Candidate takes credit for the work of others
Candidate speaks poorly of past bosses
Candidate cannot explain job moves
People most important to candidate are unsupportive of change
For managerial hires, candidate has never had to fire or fire anybody
Candidate seems more interested in compensation and benefits rather than in the job itself
Candidate tries to hard to look like an expert
Candidate is self-absorbed
None of these red flags in itself is sufficient for a thumbs down, they do tend to correlate highly with people who, while they appear to be A Players, sink down to the B and C level once a hire is make. Take a hard look at the data when you see too many red flags.
Marshall Goldsmith's Behavioral Red Flags
Nobody has studied behavioral warning signs more than Marshall Goldsmith, named by Business Week as one of the most influential practitioners of leadership development in history. In his bestseller What Got You Here Won't Get You There, Goldsmith identifies twenty behavioral derailers to consider during the hiring process, he offered the following list:
Winning too much - I would look out for people in the hiring process who boast about winning battles that do not matter that much.
Adding too much value is easy to look for. If you are talking and you throw out an idea, does the candidate try to add too many of his ideas to yours? If so, it implies that your idea was not sufficiently good on its own. It is a small indicator of ego gone awry.
Starting a sentence with, 'no', 'but' or 'however' during the interview process. 'Yes that is a great idea' is the right answer. 'No, I agree with you but' is the symptom of somebody with an overactive ego who might be challenging to work with.
Telling the world how smart we are. The unhealthy display is taking excessive credit, especially for a leadership role. For the leader, being all about me is bad.
Making destructive comments about previous colleagues is a huge red flag. Because once this person works for you, he or she will make the same needless sarcastic comments about you!
Passing the buck. Blaming is always bad. Winners don't blame.
Making excuses. Ask people what their challenges were. If they say that their biggest challenges were not their fault but other people's fault, that shows that they do not take responsibility for their performance.
The excessive need to be me. Listen for comments like 'That's just me, I'm not organized.' 'That's just me, I'm impatient.' 'That's just me, I don't include other people in decisions. That's just the way I am.' Beware. They are not open to change and should not be hired.
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