Communication hiring Culture

Congenial or cocky – whom must we hire?

Doing interviews and assessments to select the right candidate isn’t an easy task. Especially, when you have to make hard decisions about who is most suited for a particular role.

Look up this scenario, where a panel is divided on whom to choose, and share your views.

Mahesh: “Hello everyone, thanks for joining. I know it has been a busy week with the interviews you did. We need to now arrive at the right choice. Let’s do a round-robin and get everyone’s views on the candidates – Mika and Nina. Just so that everyone is on the same page, we are hiring for the junior-middle level in the supply chain team. It expects the candidate to have strong relations with stakeholders, a high degree of ownership and the ability to work collaboratively across functions. Both Mika and Nina has similar backgrounds and qualifications and equal years of experience”.

Murmurs around the room as the panelists look uneasy.

Dinesh: “Let me go first. I feel Mika came across as too ‘strong’ in his behavior and words. He said things like ‘if I don’t get it my way, then I will need to push the case hard’. Nina on the other hand, was soft spoken and that might come in the way of her delivering on the role. Our culture expects more!”

Ganga: “Well, I would disagree. Mika spoke his mind and we rather have someone who says things directly and firmly instead of being intimidated by stakeholders.”

Tejas: “This isn’t easy – we have spent very limited time with both. We can’t pass judgement on their personalities in such a short time. My guess is that they will adapt based on the role they are expected to play.”

Dinesh: “You can’t say that. The personalities can’t be changed. They are fixed and I don’t think we have time on our hands to hope for the best – that one fine day the person will change! We expect the person to come in and start delivering from day one.”

Manav: “Let’s step back. What do we really want? Someone who can deliver results, right? Does it matter how their personality is? I would suggest we go with Mika, a stronger person according to me.”

Ganga: “Deliver results at what cost? Do they step on other peoples’ toes and create friction or do they do so amicably? Mika is arrogant. We need someone who is mature and knows how to behave – not too aggressive, not too soft.”

Tejas: “We are expecting a lot. Let’s look around this table. Can we say that we are perfect in our behaviors? There is a lot we need to do – so let us give the new person a chance.”

Mahesh: “I feel, we have burnt our fingers before with getting a candidate who came in and ruined the culture. We can’t afford another error in judgement”.

The panel is confused and no one seems to know which way to go. There is silence and Mahesh decides to adjourn the meeting to another point hoping the team will arrive at a solution.

What do you think is the issue? Which candidate must they go with? How can they arrive at a sensible solution? Share your thoughts here.

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