What's More Important When Hiring - Skill or Likeability?

If you’ve ever filled an open position I’m sure you’ve felt the struggle - do you hire for skills, or do you hire for cultural fit and likeability? This is something we really need to figure out and depending on who you talk to your answers may vary. The thing is you can train anyone to do a good job - depending on the job of course -  we all know you can’t hire someone with no medical background and expect them to perform surgery, but you get what I mean. Given the right tools and training virtually anyone can do any job, so why are we scrambling to fit the perfect skill set? In my opinion you shouldn’t be. Find the person and the skills will come.

Finding Your Fit

Given that we spend a good chunk of our lives at work it is a good idea to make sure you surround yourself with people who you get along with and who are generally likeable. I’m not saying you should only hire those who you would hang out with, but think about it this way, if you were selected to go on a business trip with this person, how would you feel? The whole point is that you need to focus more on finding someone who will be enjoyable to work with, friendly, optimistic, and focus on training them to hone in on their skills. This is much simpler than trying to change someone's personality, trust me. 

Train For Success

I realize that not every company wants to take on employees who need training, but as I mentioned earlier it is easier to train someone on the job than it is to work with someone who has an abrasive personality. Finding someone who may not be exactly up to speed with the job, but can reach that point if given the right direction may be a healthier option for your office. No one wants to collaborate with someone who is an expert on paper, but difficult to work with. 

Reap the Rewards

Isn’t the entire point of switching jobs to expand your skills anyway? If you are willing to take on a new hire that wants to learn and grow, that is gold. Hiring someone who is open to learning new things can help you to refine your processes and tighten up some loose ends. What is better than bringing in a fresh set of eyes to look over your procedures and processes? This is a great way to catch inefficiencies and put some fresh initiatives in place.

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