Leadership development: Hiring for values

December 23, 2015 by Wally Bock

Maura C. Ciccarelli’s HREOnline post, “Data vs. Discretion in Hiring,” includes the following provocative statement.

“The authors also suggest that ‘managers exercise discretion because they are biased or have poor judgment, not because they are better informed. This implies that firms in our setting can further improve match quality by limiting managerial discretion and placing more weight on the test.'”

The key words there may be “in our setting.” The study that inspired the article was of hiring for “low skill service sector” jobs. That’s a very different challenge than hiring potential leaders for your company.

Leadership development is different

It’s obvious that it’s more challenging and complex to lead a team than it is to punch the keys on a cash register or put pre-made burger patties on a conveyor belt. And, as Lee Iacocca noted, “The speed of the leader is the speed of the team.” Hire people who grow into great leaders and you wind up with great teams and great results. Hire leaders with values that match company values and you reinforce the importance of those values.

Values matter in leadership development

If you’re a leader at any level, people observe your behavior and use what you say and do as guides for their behavior. It’s pretty simple really. If the leader works hard, so does the team. If the leader tells the truth and talks about the importance of telling the truth, team members are more likely to do it, too.

You need humans to judge value fit

There are lots of instruments that can help get hiring right. But if values fit is important to you, include human judgment in your hiring process.

Wally Bock is a coach, a writer and President of Three Star Leadership.

Posted in Leadership Development

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