Friday, 17 August 2007

How to Find the right Guy?

Hmmm... How to judge the right resource? when Rama on his blog asked this question I really wanted to blog the same day... unfortunately it took more than 2 months for me to find back the notepad scribble I wrote and bring it back as this Post. The other reason to bring this in is also a comment that appeared from Kari on the earlier blogpost Are your best guys in Action . So how to find the right guy for you is surely a question that Bill Gates or Steve Jobs must have asked themselves.. I am sure they must be having the closest answer and so can we. While I look to the interview process that is been followed manywhere to be the most vulnerable process where in maximum 5 meetings of around 20 hrs duration an organisation puts billions of bucks and pride at stake... Yeah by simply hiring the person who they have been interviewing for that period and role and looking at the Jargons and Jig saws he has used with his toungue and resume. Way Way Way Way... thats not all.... he/she is also been made responsible of parenting the Team and nurture or grow the organisational culture. So here are things that I feel should be done / taken into consideration while trying to find the right guy... believe me You will still not find the perfect match ;)

1. Never ever take an instant decission
Even if you like him/her as you would have liked Angeline Jolie in the wildest of your dream, just go back and think:
1. How many Guys did you interview for this position
2. What was the Best thing someone else had that he/she doesnt... Yes..dont find what Best he/she has because he/she really has it.. try to find what he/she doesnt have and someone had the best of it...
3. Do you know why you are present to interview him/her?
4. Do you or the panel has all skills required to judge the person's abilities?

I remember last when Atul (name changed) was hired to play a role as a System Administrator only within a week to realise that he was not the right choice first to play that role and second that he did not fit in the organisational culture. So what bought him into the organisation in first place? It was later realised that the guys who interviewed him were impressed by his Technical skills and effectiveness and made a quick offer.

2. Do they want to change?
Be it a Junior or a Senior see if they look for changing the ways thing work... meaning do they like bringing in a change? and if they adopt to changes easily... Someone who is not easily accepting change can be harmful in the short run and a demolisher in the long. Another thing to look for is Change doesnt mean Re-write... I remember asking a candidate about what he will do if he comes to know that the code/Architecture he is going to work on is blunderously written (Thanks to the Diminishing Quality) and answer was I will change everything , re-write the whole architecture again... well well well My friend if someone wants to change everything he is going to screw you, your budget and your vision.. someone who wants to move step by step with a slow and steady pace and bring the change is something you should look for.

3. Never find something that you miss in the Team
Till sometime back I was a tradional follower of
1. Retrospectives Find it
2. Action fix it
3. Retrospectives Find it
4. Action fix it

Till I realised that I am screwing my efforts in finding to fix them... Find a person that is similar to what your Team members are .... this can be used to improve more.

4. Decissive
How quick he reacts and makes decissions... if he is a very quick decission maker then he definately suits..... Not your Team but been a Customer Support Executive who can handle Customer Grievences very fast.... throw 5 problems at him and see how he answers or reacts....
Once I asked a guy what he will do if his Girl friend leaves him today.. just to stress his decissive skills ... and he responded he will find a New one.... Wow what a power of decission making it is... but it doesnt suit everywhere.... Someone who takes time to understand the question and then respond taking time to come up with an honest and down to earth answer is something that you should look for.... If you dont understand what it means .. throw this problem at Savio and see how he responds...

5. Is he inquisitive enough
All through my career I have met only few people who I can count on fingers really are inquisitive enough in the interviews itself... people who are not inquisitive do not really have passion towards things that come to them... if they are inquisitive they will find out.... make sure they are practically inquisitive not behavorioul inquisitive.... practical ones will think about tangible growths... behavirioul can route your Team to a Emotional Turbulence.

6. Agreements
Throw disagreements towards their answers and see if they make their point of view... One thing you would not want I am sure in your Team is a Palace full of praising demoens.... one who Nod as you do.... and have a "Boss is always right" attitude. If you have read Times Of India on Tuesday 14th August you would understand why...

7. Do they ignite anything in you?
2 Years ago in an interview I met a gentlemen who ignited a thought that helps me until now... How he said it was funny and a bit controversial too... When Asked by the panel on what you would do to achieve success in any form.... His answer was :
Every thing that President Bush would do to achieve it and everything that "The Most Wanted" Man could not to make it happen... I took the positive combination of both parts of his answer leaving the aggression behind. Its very necessary that a person ignites something in you... if he cant then he is just one more in the row..

8. Do they wait for Authorities to take Responsibilities?
Lot of guys during the interviews talk about what they could not do with the reasons always associated with them.... which means that though they wanted to do things they did not do it due to lack of Authorities.... but remember though Reponsibilities come with authority necessarily doesnt mean authorities always.... Your responsibility towards society will not mean that you will get as many authorities as a Police Man do....try to find out someone who know how to take and follow on responsibilities without caring about authorities.

9. Can they Do what You Could?
Never find out a better replacement... just find out if he can do what you can...

10. Are they Role players or Rule Players?
Lot of guys are Rule players... meaning work as said ONLY.... see if they go beyond something... or have gone beyond...

Lastly.... try to Identify what they have in their mind in terms of 1 yr , 2 yr or a 5 yr plan.... If they are ambitious its good... if they are over ambitious it could be very crude....

While I really wnat to write more on this ... I think I will stop here to make you re-visit here to find out how else and what else you can do to judge the people.... remember most of the things you do here are what you should do.. rather than what you should expect from the person you are interviewing or judging....


Sameer Shaikh