Planning is not “busy work.” Yes, it’s work and yes it is time consuming, but it is the essence of preparing for success. I have seen the results of poor planning and the results of excellent planning. You need to plan to win.
Planning For a Hiring Process
Sometimes we view planning as a waste of time. We’d much rather take action and start conquering the next project. Don’t be fooled. Upfront planning is absolutely vital to a successful end.
The hiring process is a significant undertaking that requires extensive planning. Knowing what your organization wants and needs from its next new hire is necessary to ensure a successful partnership with a retained search firm. Many issues can be avoided with some forethought at the beginning of the hiring process.
How to Plan For Success
The hiring committee needs to hold a planning session to discuss the expectations of the new hire. During this discussion, the committee needs to decide what are must-haves vs. nice to-have skills. Take time to focus on soft skills as well as hard skills. Some skills are more tangible, but they all need to be addressed. There needs to be alignment with everyone involved.
One word of caution…no amount of planning will be helpful if the ultimate decision maker is not part of these discussions. Know, without a doubt, who will make the final decision in the hiring process and be sure he or she has laid out their expectations. If this doesn’t happen, you could find yourself weeks into a hiring process only to be told the talent your organization needs is far different from what the committee was interviewing for.
Two Ways a Lack of Planning Can Hurt
- Time loss for everyone involved – internally and externally
- Damage to employment brand
In the fast-paced world of business today, time is one of our most precious commodities. It can be difficult to slow down and put concrete thought around key topics including corporate culture, organizational leadership profiles, opportunities/challenges new hires will face, and how new hires will interface with internal and external customers.
A time investment upfront, before going to market with the opportunity, is absolutely critical and cannot be side stepped, especially in the candidate-driven environment we are currently experiencing.
Damage to Employment Brand
Kicking off an executive search without role clarity sends mixed signals to the marketplace about the employment experience at your firm, thus damaging your employment brand. If a top candidate is given the run around because the committee is not sure what they really want, damage will be done. We’ve written more on this topic in this article.
How Centennial Helps Avoid Pitfalls Due to Lack of Planning
Centennial’s 4C Recruiting Process® includes a built-in, upfront time investment that walks our clients through key questions and topics. These purposeful questions bring out the clarity and transparency needed to make a successful hire. By digging deeply into the areas of Character, Chemistry, Culture and Competency on the very front end of the search process, a clear understanding can be established.
Once your cultural objectives, growth goals, and overall strategy is thoroughly explored, we are all ready to start a swift and successful search. After Centennial has taken the time to listen to your unique needs, the search can move forward with the confidence of all involved parties. This thoroughness also protects and strengthens your firm’s employment brand in the marketplace by providing clarity and direction around the firm’s strategy for potential candidates and networking sources.
Famously-Smart People Know How Important Planning is
We cannot stress enough the importance of planning. Many of history’s greatest minds felt the same. The Greek philosopher Plato stated, “The beginning is the most important part of the work.” The great Roman Orator, Cicero, is credited for saying, “Before beginning, plan carefully.”
What a great feeling to know what you want as an organization and to have someone listen and deliver that very thing. At Centennial, our business is built on relationships. The core of those relationships is listening and building your trust one day at a time. How could you benefit from someone listening to you?