My Philosophy On Hiring Staff

Episode 018

Do you have processes in place for hiring new staff?  What are they?  Are they working?  Over the years I have changed my philosophy when it comes to hiring staff.  I’ve shifted from looking primarily at experience and skill set to looking at the person’s character.

In this episode I discuss why I made that shift, and what some of the processes are I have used to find and hire new staff.  As a bonus I reveal a new resource specifically designed to help dentists…check it out and let me know what you think!

Philosophy Of Hiring

More About This Show

When I first began building my practice I hired staff the usual way: I brought in a consultant to help me hire an assistant, we placed the same ad in a few local papers and waded through the responses. I looked for someone with the most experience and certain skill sets.

Doing so worked out for me but over the years I began to shift my approach to hiring. Instead of looking for someone with a certain level of experience or skills, I looked for their character. Are they warm, friendly and outgoing? How do they relate to others and how do they build relationships? Answering those questions helped me find people with integrity.

I’ve also tried different approaches to where I found people: I’ve placed ads in the newspapers, on Craigslist, and have also used word of mouth. I’ve even had people drop off resumes and ask if we were hiring. I always appreciate that kind of initiative, even if they weren’t a fit for our office.

Those are all approaches you can use, as well as this example of how I found my current marketing director. I put an anonymous ad on Craigslist; in the ad I asked them to follow certain directions, like sending a resume with their response. Only about 30 of the 60 responses I received had a resume attached so I only viewed the people who followed directions and sent in their resumes.

After reviewing their resumes I selected about 10 people I thought could be a good fit. For those 10 people I put together a survey on Surveymonkey. I sent that survey to them to complete; I wanted to see if they would actually do it, and how they well they would perform. Would you believe only 5 people filled out the survey?! And of those 5 only a few of them did well on the very simple survey.

So out of 60 total responses only 3 people did well enough to be interviewed. Those 3 were invited into a face to face interview with them. One of those three had personal connections to people I know. After meeting with her I talked to our mutual connections about her, and they vouched for her character. Based on that and the interview I hired her and we’ve been happily working together ever since!

Whether you use that approach or not I do recommend looking at people for their character and personality. You don’t have to hire someone from the dental field for all of your positions. I’ve hired pharmacy techs, veterinary techs and others because they were a good fit personality-wise and were a good addition to our office staff.

On this episode I share some of the reasons hiring from within the dental industry hasn’t worked for me in the past as well as how I’ve hired interns who have become my surgical assistants. You’ll hear all of that plus an awesome resource for all your podcast-listening needs! Check it out on episode 18 of Business Dentistry.

Tweetable: “You can train skill, you can’t teach good character!”

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