A team is like a dinner party – one wrong guest can ruin the experience for everyone. Our human nature is to hire people with whom we are comfortable, people like us. This can bring disaster, especially as a company grows.
We must hire for balance. Some might call this diversity, but I think the term balance gets us to look at the challenge in a different way.
- Step One: Try asking HR to provide ‘blind resumes’. These have no names and no dates. They simply provide you with an understanding of the types of companies in which they have worked, the types of roles they have held and most importantly their acquired and mastered skills.
- Step Two: Craft questions that let you know more about how they work. What is their default state? Are they deadline or project driven? Do they think strategically or tactically? Are they high or low energy?
- Step Three: When you get to the final two or three, require assessments. Use the assessments which best serve your organization and culture.
- Step Four: Finally, with all the information in front of you, look at the team as a whole. Knowing what you know about everyone, who will fit in the best? Who can help provide balance and perspective?
Remember that as your organization grows, so will the need for balance, perspective and diversity on your team.