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Everything takes longer than you think it will (especially hiring!)
11 February 2013, by , in Executive, No comments

I am, admittedly, an incredibly impatient person. It’s one of the reasons I LOVE the internet; instant gratification. I can get the answer to that question about a movie, or immediately order something I want (from Amazon, natch), without ever having to leave my home (and often without even having to get out of the chair I’m sitting in!).

But it’s critically important to keep in mind that most things in life, and especially in business, take longer than they think they will. And this is especially true of hiring staff. I know recruiting firms have rules-of-thumb for how long it will take to hire key senior positions, but even for the most junior positions, my experience is that hiring a qualified and quality individual takes much longer than we think it will.

I raise this issue for two reasons:

  1. We need to give ourselves as much time as possible to fill positions. This means that if we’ve got a new position being created, or if an existing position opens up due to turnover, we must act NOW to fill the position. That means keeping existing job descriptions up-to0-date, and it means quickly creating job descriptions for new positions. It also means listing these positions as quickly as possible.
  2. When we’re rushed, we make bad decisions. One of the worst hiring decisions I made was during the height of the dot-com era in the late 90s. I desperately needed a salesperson, and I hired a guy who looked good on paper, but gave me a bad vibe during the interviews. But I was desperate and hired him anyway. Within four months, it was obvious it wasn’t working out, and we agreed to part ways. So giving yourself as much time as possible to make a hiring decision will minimize the chances of making a bad hire.

So if you’re thinking of creating a new position, or know that you’ve got a position coming open soon, get to work NOW on completing the job description and advertising the position. The longer you wait, the longer it’ll take!

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“Wes was able to come in and offer tangible, relevant advice that made us more productive immediately. I value his understanding of databases but more so, his understanding of how nonprofits work. There was no lost time educating him about how membership organizations are “different.” Wes recommended changes in processes as well as tips and tricks that were easy to implement made an immediate positive impact.”

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Jack Chiasson, CMP Executive Director
National Association of Life Brokerage Agencies

“Wes was able to come in and offer tangible, relevant advice that made us more productive immediately. I value his understanding of databases but more so, his understanding of how nonprofits work. There was no lost time educating him about how membership organizations are “different.” Wes recommended changes in processes as well as tips and tricks that were easy to implement made an immediate positive impact.”

Mary Pat Paris, Executive Director
International Registration Plan

Mary Pat Paris
International Registration Plan

“This is the second database implementation we’ve done since I have been at Western Arts Alliance (WAA). The first I did on my own. This time we engaged Wes Trochlil as our database planning consultant. Let me tell you, this process is a whole lot easier having Wes on your team! For a small association like WAA, it’s tempting for board and EDs to question the justification and expense of a database planning consultant. But it’s the small associations that need Effective Database Management the most. Wes strengthened our planning process, clarified our needs requirements, helped us steer around solutions that couldn’t meet our objectives, and saved us money in the long haul.”

Tim Wilson, Executive Director
Western Arts Alliance

Tim Wilson
Western Arts Alliance
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