Skip to main content

How to find Givers when Hiring

How do you hire the best talent into your organization? If you believe your people are your best asset how do you make sure you are hiring in a way that will protect and lift those assets? I believe employees can be a company's biggest asset, but that is not to say anyone you hire immediately becomes a huge asset. Too many companies during the interview process focus on understanding the person's skill level. While this is important I believe it is the soft skills and the personality type that is most important. However, most interviews spend very little time trying to flush these traits out. The personality traits of a person are hard to flush out in a 60 minute interview, which is probably why most people don't try.

A while back I watched a talk from Adam Grant on TED about giver's and taker's. This talk really rang true for me and my experience at different companies. I really believe that if a company can fill their ranks with Givers (or at least Matchers) they will fair much better. The question though is how does one find the givers? How can you understand this about someone in a short interview or series of short interviews? Here are the approaches I have found and value the most.
Here are some questions you can ask.

Can you give me the names of four people whose careers you have fundamentally improved?

This question is not about rather they can give you names but where in the organization these people are in relation to them.
The takers will give you the names of four people who have more influence than they do. Hot shot names you'll be impressed by. This is because takers excel at kissing up. And they use the people below them as stepping stones. They care more about influence than they do about helping.  -

The givers, on the other hand, will give you the names of four people you've likely never heard of. People who are equal to them or below them on the totem pole of power. That's because givers aren't in the business of helping to help themselves succeed.  -
The other question you can ask to help gage rather they are are giver is something a long the times of "Can you give me an example of how you worked a task on a team when no one on the team wanted to do the task?" The idea here is to get a feel for rather they took a take, giving or matching approach to the problem. Did they just tell someone on the team they have to do it or convince them to do it. Or did that fall on their sword to move the team forward?

If you have the ability to take the person to a meal here is a great trick from the CEO of Charles Schwab. Maybe you can't put them in a situation like this but what other ways can you see if they are willing to give up what they want to help work through an issue? Ordering in a collection of different food boxes can also help with this. Does the person try to get up and be the first one to get the food to make sure they get what they want? Or do they try and make sure everyone else is able to get food and the team is satisfied?

Let's spend less time in interviews focused on rather or not people can check the right boxes for skills and more time on figuring out how they go about checking those boxes. For each taker you hire into your organization you swing a matcher to work that way or cancel out a givers desire to be a giver. 

Keep in mind, as Grant says in his research, Givers can become Takers at times. So just because you think you have hired a Giver it does not mean they will always be a giver. Your next challenge is the work to make sure your employees stay Givers.
My father said there were two different kinds of people in the world: givers and takers.  The takers may eat better but the givers sleep better. -Marlo Thomas


Popular posts from this blog

Uniting Testing Expression Predicate with Moq

I recently was setting up a repository in a project with an interface on all repositories that took a predicate. As part of this I needed to mock out this call so I could unit test my code. The vast majority of samples out there for mocking an expression predicate just is It.IsAny<> which is not very helpful as it does not test anything other then verify it got a predicate. What if you actually want to test that you got a certain predicate though? It is actually pretty easy to do but not very straight forward. Here is what you do for the It.IsAny<> approach in case someone is looking for that. this .bindingRepository.Setup(c => c.Get(It.IsAny<Expression<Func<UserBinding, bool >>>())) .Returns( new List<UserBinding>() { defaultBinding }.AsQueryable()); This example just says to always return a collection of UserBindings that contain “defaultBinding” (which is an object I setup previously). Here is what it looks like when you want to pass in an exp

Experience Profile Anonymous, Unknown and Known contacts

When you first get started with Sitecore's experience profile the reporting for contacts can cause a little confusion. There are 3 terms that are thrown around, 1) Anonymous 2) Unknown 3) Known. When you read the docs they can bleed into each other a little. First, have a read through the Sitecore tracking documentation to get a feel for what Sitecore is trying to do. There are a couple key things here to first understand: Unless you call " IdentifyAs() " for request the contact is always anonymous.  Tracking of anonymous contacts is off by default.  Even if you call "IdentifyAs()" if you don't set facet values for the contact (like first name and email) the contact will still show up in your experience profile as "unknown" (because it has no facet data to display).  Enabled Anonymous contacts Notice in the picture I have two contacts marked in a red box. Those are my "known" contacts that I called "IdentifyAs"

Excel XIRR and C#

I have spend that last couple days trying to figure out how to run and Excel XIRR function in a C# application. This process has been more painful that I thought it would have been when started. To save others (or myself the pain in the future if I have to do it again) I thought I would right a post about this (as post about XIRR in C# have been hard to come by). Lets start with the easy part first. In order to make this call you need to use the Microsoft.Office.Interop.Excel dll. When you use this dll take note of what version of the dll you are using. If you are using a version less then 12 (at the time of this writing 12 was the highest version) you will not have an XIRR function call. This does not mean you cannot still do XIRR though. As of version 12 (a.k.a Office 2007) the XIRR function is a built in function to Excel. Prior version need an add-in to use this function. Even if you have version 12 of the interop though it does not mean you will be able to use the function. The

Security Config in IIS Express

I have gotten tired of always having to look this up or remember where it is at. That means it is time to post to my blog so I can find it easier and hopefully others can too. If you are having issues with IIS Express authentication errors (like the Unauthorized 401.2 error I always get) here is some help. I can never remember what the last setting was I had IIS Express set to for authorization. To change IIS Express for windows auth or anonymous auth you want to work with the applicationhost.config file. It can be found here …Documents\IISExpress\config. You want to change the settings in the following area of the config file. < authentication > < anonymousAuthentication enabled ="true" userName ="" /> < basicAuthentication enabled ="false" /> < clientCertificateMappingAuthentication enabled ="false" /> < digestAuthentication enabled ="false" />

Anatomy of Sitecore Business Rule - Field Syntax

In the previous post, I talked about the general anatomy of Sitecore Business Rules . In this post, we will dig more into the rule itself and how you can set one up. In the previous post, I mentioned the "special syntax" a rule has in the "text" field. Let's dig more into what this is. This is broken into 4 parameters, not all of which are required.  Property to set , defines the public property of the class where we want to assign the value coming from the content author input Operator or Macro , the operator we want to use to evaluate the condition. In this case, this will be a string comparison operation Additional Parameters , this parameter will depend on the type of macro that we use, this could be a default text value if we are using the default macro,  it could be a default start path if we’re using the Tree macro ( root=/sitecore/content/myitem )  – think of it like setting a field source when we’re building a template in Sitecore. A full l