There’s a reason this is the most clichéd saying in the world (we Googled it, and yes, it has been voted the biggest cliché ever).
Looks can be deceiving, how could one truly verify an identity? We’ve been taught that confidence is a good thing, and while this is true, often confidence can turn into cockiness or even a cover up for someone’s true personality. Confident people usually dominate a room. They are able to hold the attention of others, chat up a storm and leave an impact on the people around them. Confidence is often used as a cover up for insecurities a person may want to hide.
Some people are able to make you believe they are who they say they are by being overly smooth, suave and sophisticated to obtain their goal, these types of individuals usually have a criminal record, and when it comes to the interviewing game, this should be kept on top of mind at all times. Have you ever been in a situation where you meet someone who is able to hold you in their grasp and when they leave, you feel equally mesmerised and impressed by their magnetic presence? This, ladies and gentlemen, is the power of confidence.
When welcoming a new applicant into an interview, make an effort to notice exactly how they make you feel. Take into account their confidence levels, and the atmosphere that they create. Notice the way they present themselves: Is his hair a little too perfect? Her handshake a little too firm? Don’t fall prey to someone just because they look the part. At this point, you most likely feeling that some sort of background check needs to be completed. But, remember what we learnt at the very beginning of this? We’re not judging any books by their covers.
When we get to know someone they begin to open up. We can either be pleasantly surprised or horrified to find that the person in question is very different to how they appear to be, or how we imagined them to be. We therefore always recommend testing the applicant to observe the way they handle themselves in different situations.
One way of testing an applicant without completing a full employment background screening process is by beginning the interview a little later. Make the applicant wait a little before calling them in for their interview. This will allow you to observe the way they react while waiting for something they are already nervous about.
You’ll be able to detect if they get overly anxious, angry, or if they are as cool as a cucumber. It’s important to note how they interact with your receptionist during this time. If someone is rude and obnoxious because they are made to wait, you’ll know instantly that this is someone who does not represent your core values.
You’ll learn a lot about your applicant in the fifteen minutes you have them waiting for you.
Another way in which you can test your applicant is by bringing them in for a trial period. This means that the applicant would work in the work environment under the different pressures that the company faces on a daily basis. Give the applicant fair, but challenging tasks to complete so that you can observe the way in which they handle themselves. Usually, you’ll be able to notice if the fish is out of water.
We understand that beginning a new job is not an easy thing to do. We’re not encouraging making someone’s life a living hell to test if they are worthy or capable to work in your company. Rather, we’re encouraging you to make informed decisions before permanently hiring someone. We’re well aware that applicants are often nervous during an interview, and this is normal. We’re not talking about the usual jitters many people experience; we’re describing an applicant who presents with emphasised symptoms of either nerves or confidence. We’re talking about panic-attacks in the hallway, temper-tantrums, gossip mongrels, suspicious phone calls all day long, or tittle-tales at the end of a boardroom meeting. These are the warning signs we’re emphasising, we suggest a full background screen should be completed.
As this chapter discusses the importance of not to judging anyone based on their appearance, we’d like to bring one more method in which you can rest assured that the person you just hired will not do damage to your business. Another way to make sure you’re hiring someone who is right for your company is by taking a deeper look into the applicant. Did someone say background check? Yes, we did.
We’re not talking about hiring a private investigator or having anyone stalked, we’re talking about the basic checks you can do to make sure that your potential employee is indeed who he or she says they are, such as checking if an applicant has a criminal record, if they have been blacklisted or if their ID number is valid. A little legal snooping can help provide information you wish you had three months down the line.
The bottom line here? It’s important to check everyone out.