A strong corporate identity makes it easier to hire well.
Imagine that you're hiring for a key position in your company. You're down to three candidates. How do you decide which one gets the offer?
There are all kinds of answers to this question. This one has slightly better qualifications. That one went to a school / worked at a company I like. I felt something in my gut about that third one—and I think it was a good something.
Now, these aren't terrible answers. But they're not great either.
Here's a recommendation:
Only hire people who are already in alignment with your corporate identity.
Maybe you're scratching your head at this point. Maybe you're thinking:
- "Our corporate identity is general. Wouldn't almost anyone seem aligned with it?"
- "I can't quite remember what our corporate identity is. Is it really relevant?"
- "Is it even possible that someone could already be aligned with our identity?"
In my experience, consulting with well over 100 companies (usually regarding their identity), you'll rarely find a truly good fit if you don't know exactly how to measure fit.
You'll rarely find a truly good fit if you don't know exactly how to measure fit .
If your identity is too general, it's not yet strong enough to be useful. (Ask yourself: does our identity focus on buzz words like integrity or customer service?)
If you can't remember your identity, it's not yet strong enough to be useful.
If your identity can't help you identify whether your candidates are a good fit or a bad fit, it's not yet strong enough to be useful.
As Peter Drucker once wrote, "Culture eats strategy for breakfast." And that's one of the best statements ever about team member fit.
When you're interviewing, imagine being able to ask yourself: which of these candidates already values what we value? Which one already cares about the direction we're headed? Does one of them even bring a strength to the table that compensates for one of our known corporate weaknesses?