Have you ever sat in an interview across from an engaging, enigmatic, intelligent human and suddenly found yourself absolutely petrified?

As a leader of a function you want the best possible team around you, people that get you, that have the energy and the drive to help you meet those targets! But, then why is it that looking directly into the eyes of a star candidate, the feeling of dread overwhelms you.
Let’s consider possible reasons why this is happening?
  • Could you be worried about the impact this person will have on your team? You work hard to provide a balanced working environment, one  that equally challenges and nurtures those within it. Could the introduction of someone with more experience than is required upset that balance and create issues with the existing function?
  • Are you worried that they will get bored? Are you wondering why this person wants to join your team; thinking they will quickly get fed up with a role that they are overqualified for?
  • Are you concerned about how they make you look? We all aim to think bigger, but let’s be honest, it’s nerve wracking when you meet a candidate that knows more than you do and you are the boss!

So, why am I bringing this to your attention? 

Recently, I’ve seen a couple of my clients walk away from incredible candidates because they were ‘too good’, and although I respect that decision, I wouldn’t be doing my job if I didn’t challenge that thought process. Afterall, it’s my job to help you build a high performing team and when exceptional talent is being turned away, we all must ask ourselves why and what could you be missing out on?

Someone who had some really interesting pointers on this subject is famous millionaire James Caan, who initially achieved his success in the recruitment industry.  He say’s…
  • One of the biggest challenges for a manager or business leader is to ensure you have the right mix of talents and characters. A successful team has people from a variety of disciplines with different approaches to problems – but crucially, they are all working towards one shared goal.
  • Any decision that is made by a manager should always be taken for the good of the organisation as a whole rather than what best suits individuals.
  • In fact it can be a sign of strength in an individual to recognise when you are not good at something so you can bring someone in who is.
  • As well as driving your business forward, hiring people who are better than you in certain areas will naturally improve your own skill set. Whether you are a fresh graduate or a seasoned Chief Executive, you should constantly be looking to improve on a personal level.
  • We are operating in a fast-moving environment younger people have grown up with the technology and almost take it completely for granted. It makes sense to take on someone who understands and feels comfortable with social media for example.
Its not just James Caan that recognises the value of hiring out of your comfort zones.

"Never hire someone who knows less than you do about what he's hired to do."
Malcolm Forbes

“A small team of A+ players can run circles around a giant team of B and C players.”
Steve Jobs

“Hire people who are better than you are, then leave them to get on with it.”
 David Ogilvy

Now you have heard these opinions,what is yours? Do you think these approaches are only for businesses willing to take risks? Or could your workplace do with a shining star or two to inspire and progress change?


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