“Hire for Attitude, Train for Skills” — Herb Kelleher
I’ve been recruiting ever since I started my entrepreneurship journey 3 years ago and it is a very integral part of what I do even today. I’ve so far taken over a 1000+ interviews with freshers and recruited around 40+
According to a research done by Mark Murphy, an author of Hiring for Attitude, more than 45% of new hires fail within the first 18 months of their job and it has very less to do with skill and more with their attitude, but when you have less than 5 minutes to skim a résumé or when you actually sit down for an interview and have less than half an hour to profile a person, it is not a easy job considering the limited resources you have as a startup (both in terms of time and personnel) especially considering they don’t have any work experience to speak for.
On the basis of my experiences, I’m recommending 5 things to look for when you recruit freshers:
Try to ask them questions such as connecting the nine dots with 5 lines without picking up the pen, what is the shortest distance between two opposite ends of a cube and so on.
If you’re recruiting for IT, I would recommend that you let them solve questions from the Euler Project. If they are not able to crack them or even come near them then it’s a red flag for sure.
Let them write 15 sentences about themselves on a sheet of paper — you will see how they articulate, their sentence formation, what they think of themselves and their attitude as well.
Furthermore, you can let them write on a very well known topic as well, ask them what do they read, which blogs/authors do they follow and such. In a rapidly evolving world, if they are not able to quote blogs, authors or books — I would consider it as a red flag.
While they do not have real world experience, they would have taken up some sort of project as a part of their academics and it’s important to know their perspective, their contribution to the same and their passion behind the same.
While they might have a top notch syllabus, no syllabus can catch up with the ever-changing landscape of technology and business. Ask them specific courses and demo links they might have created, their github profiles and more specific details so you can know what are they doing apart from their curriculum.
Ask them hypothetical situations such as what if their senior asks them to lie , what if their team mate is not performing leading to extra pressure on the person and so forth. While there is no right or wrong answer, it is great to know their perspective and it’s great to learn on how they would work with your existing team.
To bring a new member in your team, it is very important to bring people who are also of roughly equal if not exact skill set, people who are more skilled might not like working with people who are too slow to pick up and people might be demotivating for the slow guys.
It is important to create healthy competition between your teams and within them for themselves and the company itself.
At SoluteLabs, we aim to recruit for passion, attitude and outlook. If you’re looking to join us, look at the open positions here or get in touch!
Originally published at solutelabs.quora.com.