Is your team full of people just like you?
The people we bring into our teams are vital in contributing to organisational success. People really do make the difference and organisations are only ever as good as the people within them. Dynamic teams start in the recruitment process and it’s easy to fall into the trap of hiring the wrong person. One of the biggest mistakes we see managers making is hiring people who are too much like themselves.
Why do we all lean towards hiring people we like?
Interviews only provide managers a small amount of time to try and figure out the personality of any potential team members. Taking in a first impression can go two ways – either we see something we don’t like in the other person and we amplify it or we see something we do like in the other person and we amplify it. Often, the things we like are things that we see in ourselves. An ideas person might be more inclined to hire another ideas person, for example, and less inclined to hire a task-oriented person.
Managers can also hire people they like because it seems like their values line up with the organisation’s. It’s important to remember, however, that your personal values — even as the manager — are probably not identical to the organisation’s values. Many managers can make the mistake of hiring to their own personal values rather than the organisation’s. It’s important to always be hiring to the organisation’s values to ensure that employees stay with the team for the long-haul.
The likeability of a potential team member can seem very alluring. A likeable person can seem like the best person for the job, just because we like the idea of seeing them everyday or because we can imagine being friends with them. While it’s true that when team members like each other the lines of communication are more open and issues are resolved quickly, likeability is actually not a good enough reason on its own to bring someone into your team.
Hiring people just because you like them isn’t as appealing as it sounds
Imagine if Ronald McDonald was in charge of the hiring of staff at McDonald’s and he preferred to hire people who looked and thought like him. It’s a pretty terrifying image but it would also mean that McDonald’s would be stuck back in 1963 with no new ideas, no new look, nothing interesting about it.
Only hiring people who look like us mean that we have an organisation or a team full of clones. Opinions would rarely differ, new ideas would be low on the ground and new methods of working would not be welcome.
Healthy, powerful teams are not full of sameness. Disagreement is healthy, new ideas should always be flying around and your team should always be looking to improve how the team functions. These things don’t happen if your team is full of people who think just like you – as appealing as they might seem at first.
Creating dynamic teams starts with keeping an open mind as you choose your team members. Opposites attract, as the old saying goes, so make sure you’re bringing people into your team that think differently from you, have different experiences and personalities and are ready to change things up and adapt to drive your team to success. Are you ready to create a powerful and dynamic team? People Make the Difference can help. To find out more, visit www.pmtd.com.au or call us on 0412 333 415. Try our online leadership training videos – $99 for complete access. Great value if you’re committed to growing your leadership potential.