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want your opinion about interview idea

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
I'm hiring a regional sales manager. I want him to last, and to be happy with the company. I have 8 really strong candidates, and I think that the package that I am offering is competative and the job is very attractive.


now, some the people who report to me love me, some hate me. I am, as it were, an aquired taste.

when I choose the final candidate, I will fly them in from europe for a few days interview. I will spend maybe as much as 50K on training them, and they will probably earn 200K before they sell their first cent. so I really don't want to hire somebody and have them leave soon later.

I am thinking that I will ask the final candidate, before he comes to the states for the interview, to talk on the phone with two of my present reports, as well as a report who quit because he hated working for me. I honestly don't think the latter will lie, I think he will say thinks like "globetrotter is such an asshole, he used to insist that I get up in the morning and work"


I recognize that this is risky, but I think it migth work.


what do you think?
post #2 of 22
people never say what you expect them to say. I like the idea, but be sure you KNOW there is nothing truly damaging the old report can say.
post #3 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by globetrotter View Post

as well as a report who quit because he hated working for me.

This would sound alarms for me as a candidate.
post #4 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by globetrotter View Post

I'm hiring a regional sales manager. I want him to last, and to be happy with the company. I have 8 really strong candidates, and I think that the package that I am offering is competative and the job is very attractive.
now, some the people who report to me love me, some hate me. I am, as it were, an aquired taste.
when I choose the final candidate, I will fly them in from europe for a few days interview. I will spend maybe as much as 50K on training them, and they will probably earn 200K before they sell their first cent. so I really don't want to hire somebody and have them leave soon later.
I am thinking that I will ask the final candidate, before he comes to the states for the interview, to talk on the phone with two of my present reports, as well as a report who quit because he hated working for me. I honestly don't think the latter will lie, I think he will say thinks like "globetrotter is such an asshole, he used to insist that I get up in the morning and work"
I recognize that this is risky, but I think it migth work.
what do you think?

You're the boss, but this doesn't seem like it's the best idea.

Just vet the candidates as carefully as possible based on what YOU want out of an employee. If that means interviewing them four times each (in person, on the phone, skype, etc.) so be it.
I like this approach because it gives you the opportunity to vet the candidates carefully and it gives them the opportunity to vet you carefully. If your management style is so polarizing and there's a chance they won't like it, all the more reason to give them the chance to familiarize themselves with you.

Any HR head will tell you that hiring is a two way street and the best hires are ones that are transparent and make the manager and the employee what they're looking for.
post #5 of 22
why do some people love you and others hate you? Knowing that would probably help better match your hire to your management style, no?
post #6 of 22
I'll take 200k biggrin.gif
post #7 of 22
I would be hesitant to have an ex-employee converse with any new hire.

Be honest, upfront, and don't sell yourself, be yourself.
post #8 of 22
my current boss has me talk to all of our potential hires on the phone, just the two of us. Its offline and off the record. I don't have to tell him anything. It feels good, he knows I will be 100% honest, one way or the other.

I wouldn't put him in touch with someone who quit. Thats like talking to the exgf....
post #9 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by xpress View Post

I would be hesitant to have an ex-employee converse with any new hire.
Be honest, upfront, and don't sell yourself, be yourself.

do this^^.
if i quit working for you and you asked me to talk to a potential new hire, i would tell you to fuck off!
post #10 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by ter1413 View Post

do this^^.
if i quit working for you and you asked me to talk to a potential new hire, i would tell you to fuck off!

globe's in the business of selling. If anything the idea that a new accountmanager in from what I can gather is a hard market will need to be VERY good. To have him cold call a former employee that quit and ask him why seems like a good idea to me, and will test/prepare him or her for the riguer of the job.
post #11 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GQgeek View Post

why do some people love you and others hate you? Knowing that would probably help better match your hire to your management style, no?

cause I'm a driven bastard.

it's really pretty simple - I drive triple digit growth, you can't do that while making friends. people who really enjoy working hard and stretching their comfort zones like working for me, people who feel that they know best how to do their jobs, and are pretty satisfied with what they have hate me. I am tasked with growing sales - if you feel that you are doing your job perfectly, then there is no room for growing sales in your territory. so, we are at conflict. if you feel you are doing your job well, but there is room to find ways to grow, then we get along great.
post #12 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by nootje View Post

globe's in the business of selling. If anything the idea that a new accountmanager in from what I can gather is a hard market will need to be VERY good. To have him cold call a former employee that quit and ask him why seems like a good idea to me, and will test/prepare him or her for the riguer of the job.

this.
post #13 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by nootje View Post

globe's in the business of selling. If anything the idea that a new accountmanager in from what I can gather is a hard market will need to be VERY good. To have him cold call a former employee that quit and ask him why seems like a good idea to me, and will test/prepare him or her for the riguer of the job.

this. Sales isn't about the warm/fuzzies. If a candidate calls a former employee and gives him free rein to bitch and moan (hey, I'm thinking about working for Mr. X, what can you tell me about him), that would make a great barometer for what to expect, and also to contrast himself against the disgruntled ex-employee.
post #14 of 22
Its funny though, at the moment im conflicted about something related to this in my own job. Im in m&a, but am regarded quite valuable to firms due to a very large and influencing network in the midmarket field even though I still have to hit 30. Whilst the owner(and my boss) at my current boutique has a long history in the field he also has a tendency to "burn" relations, i.e. use them up and move on. Personally, i'm not like this and prefer to cultivate my network and never abuse them. Two weeks ago he made me use one of my relations in a not so kosher way, and imo didnt appreciate that I was willing to do this. It makes me considering a switch to a different firm because of just that. I guess its the slight difference between hard selling and having deals come up through on a more natural basis.

Naturally, i wouldnt apply for globe's job smile.gif
post #15 of 22
I make my living in fairly big ticket, high pressure, high compensation sales, so I find this topic fascinating. Here is my answer. You've got 8 great candidates, so try your idea on one or two of the candidates, see how it flies. If it's a disaster, you've got 6-7 candidates left, haha. I laugh, but I'm serious. You can have committee meetings all day long, but ultimately, you don't know if an idea will fly unless you try it. You are in a unique position to try your idea at fairly low risk.

The one thing I notice, however, is you've got people currently working for you, some love you, some hate you, your words. This means that you have high producers that hate you, right? I mean, they must be producing, or you would fire them. So I infer they are producing, but they hate you. You may want to look at your management style, continue your innate style with the people that currently love you, but adjust your style with the people that currently hate you. Can't have too may good producers. This might be easier than jumping through hoops to identify the people that acquire the taste to work for you.

Anyway, please let us know what happens. And if your candidate could tape the conversation w/ the disgruntled employee that left the company, and you could provide that, that would be educational as well. nod[1].gif
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