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Strategic Discipline Blog

Run, Improve or Create Systems. Selecting the Right People

Posted by Douglas A Wick on Mon, May 9, 2011

A common mistake in the recruiting and hiring process is to be unclear about who and what you are hiring for.  With every one of our growing clients, we recommend Topgrading methods to select the right employees.  It’s important to recognize that of the Four Decisions that impact your business growth, People are the critical first piece.  I remind you of Jim Collins words in Good to Great, “First who than what.” 

People are more important than what you do. Choosing the right people requires taking time to envision the person you wish to hire and what the requirements are for the position you want to systems resized 600

Topgrading sets the tone for your decision-making.  The first step in Topgrading is to define the scorecard for the position you are looking to fill.  The scorecard includes defining the mission for the position and then establishing 5-7 measurable accountabilities that provide quantification for this position meets “A” player standards.  I outlined this earlier in my February newsletter Make Your People Accountable

Another important question learned in my E-Myth coaching training is to ask yourself: Do you want him or her to run a system that's already in place? Improve it? Or create new systems to reach particular objectives?  It usually requires a higher caliber employee to create systems and improve them than someone who is going to run a system already in place. 

Can you see why it’s so important to define the vision for the position?  Clearly, if you don’t have the position defined you won’t be able to recognize the person who fits it even if they are standing in front of you.

You may wish to consider including in your hiring process the question of risk.  Every candidate comes with a possibility of risk.  Carol Quinn is another expert on hiring who wrote the book Don’t Hire Anyone Without Me.  She offers very insightful ideas and questions on discovering a candidates’ Locus of Control.  Locus of Control distinguishes whether a candidate makes decisions internally or externally to provide evidence of their level of responsibility.

You may want to include on your Job Summary Scorecard scoring for the risk the potential candidate represents.  Building a scorecard for each position that quantifies whether or not your candidate qualifies for the key competencies you need to fill is essential to getting the right people on the bus.

The Fortune Growth Summit in Houston, Texas starts tomorrow.   I’ll provide a quick rundown of the speakers on Tuesday as well as insights from one of their speeches.   Look for my next blog late Tuesday or early Wednesday morning.  

Topics: Good to Great, Accountability, People, A Players, Topgrading, The Right People

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Doug Wick, President

Positioning Systems


The Strategic Discipline Blog focuses on midsize business owners with a ravenous appetite to improve his or her leadership skills and business results.

Our 3 disciplines include:

- Priorities
- Metrics
- Meeting Rhythms

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