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When the Odds are Good but the Goods are Odd

Posted October 31, 2017

Tonya Lanthier, RDH

Have you ever felt this way when looking for a team member that fits in to your practice?

Have you ever hired the wrong person? Or have you ever had lots of candidates apply but none seem to fit your culture? It’s the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. One bowl of porridge is too hot and one is too cold. It takes a while to find the perfect fit.

I’ve learned throughout my career there’s no one thing that helps determine the right fit. There are many factors, but when you start with the core first, you’ll be much more successful.

When I pick a new team member my first step is to make sure I know my WHY as a leader of the company. Why do we do what we do?

Simon Sinek’s gives a great Ted Talk on this topic, and it’s a great place to start if you are having trouble understanding your why. People do not buy what you do or how you do it. They buy WHY you do it. The best practices I have seen are great at communicating this to their team and to their patients.

The second step in hiring is knowing your core values and again, communicating this to your team. We want to attract the right and repel the wrong. This saves us time and money in the long run. When we write our job ads to target the right candidates with who we are and why we do what we do, then we will be more successful in putting together a better fitting team. When you have teams that run well together you have an office that is more productive and you see it in patient satisfaction and care.

The third step is asking the right questions. Going into an interview without any preparation is a waste of time for everyone. Listen for cues and pay attention to body language. Remember to think about the kinds of answers you want to hear. Hiring for culture fit isn’t just a Q&A. If possible, see if you can get the candidate to spend time with your team. We’ve created a hiring toolkit with the instruments you need to save time and money hiring. You can download it directly from our site and use it the next time you need to fill a position in your office. Here are some questions from the toolkit I like to ask in interviews to get a better understanding of the candidate and how they will fit into my team:

  • What were you hired to do in your last job?
  • Why did you leave your job?
  • When have you had to lead by example and how did others respond?
  • What was the most productive team that you’ve been on and why?
  • What is your greatest personal accomplishment and why?
  • Do you have a mentor? What have you learned from them?

Step outside the resume. Personality tests can tell you how will a candidate will mesh with your team. Hiring is a lot like dating. Similar to a relationship, for a match to work there has to be similar core values, wishes and goals. At DentalPost, we use a DISC personality test. This tells you how a person will communicate with others on your team and what their motivators are. Skills can be taught; culture, communication style and core values are harder to change.

Be strategic with your hiring. Beat the odds. Using data will increase the percentage that you will find a perfect fit. Hiring is not a simple task, but when it is done well, it saves time, headaches and money. Weeding out the candidates who don’t fit is the key to being successful.

DentalPost is the dental industry’s premier and largest online and mobile job board.
We connect and educate more than 850,000 job seekers in the U.S. and Canada to build better places to work through teams that excel.

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