When it comes to a massive and well-respected corporation such as Google sharing ideas, imparting knowledge or offering tips related to business, you can be sure that everyone is going to sit up and take note. Whether you run a large, successful business, or a fledgling, small start-up, it’s of vital importance that you hire (and maintain) the right team, one that will carry, grow and ultimately, make your business a success.
When it comes to a massive and well-respected corporation such as Google sharing ideas, imparting knowledge or offering tips related to business, you can be sure that everyone is going to sit up and take note. Whether you run a large, successful business, or a fledgling, small start-up, it’s of vital importance that you hire (and maintain) the right team, one that will carry, grow and ultimately, make your business a success. When it comes to hiring, Google has spent years anaylsing copious amounts of data (of course) in an attempt to perfect and refine its hiring formula. It’s safe to say, that it now has it down to a fine art. Here are a few of the observations they’ve made over time:
Grades are not everything
When interviewing prospective new employees, the folks at Google don’t even ask candidates for their university results. The reason for this is that academic institutions are viewed as artificial environments – they do not offer a true reflection of a person’s ability. Students are conditioned to think in a certain way and in the outside world (and Google’s), this seems to be restrictive. Google seeks those people that are able to think out of the box and whilst someone may not excel academically, that doesn’t mean that they are incapable of thinking in a way that will make them a perfect fit for a job in the right environment. Grades are not everything and very often it’s what lies beyond the few marks on a piece of paper that really counts.
(Please note: this doesn’t go to say that hiring academically smart people is a non-no; it just means that it shouldn’t always come down to that).
Brainteasers must go
For many years, asking interviewees to tackle and solve a string of next-to-impossible brainteasers was Google’s most famous (and feared) hiring strategy. The idea was to see if potential hires were capable of thinking analytically. However, Google eventually came to the realisation that the brainteasers were not able to predict any kind of thinking accurately and that all that seemed to be happening was that the interviewers were made to feel empowered and smart. Needless to say, the brainteasers were eventually eliminated completely.
“Good” interviewers don’t exist
You are always going to get people who have a knack for conducting great interviews, but at the end of the day, Google discovered that the interviewers themselves had no direct impact on the kind of person hired – it simply came down to luck. There is no such thing as a “good hirer” and there doesn’t seem to be any correlation between the hirer and the subsequent performance of the employee. Sometimes, those new hires that interviewers never expected to excel, end up really impressing everyone.
Managers get employee feedback
In most companies, the norm is that it’s the managers that review their team members and give them feedback with regards to their overall performance. At Google, employees are also given the opportunity to rate their managers and share how they feel about their superiors’ performances. All the data is collected and then fed back to the managers themselves, ensuring that each and every manager gets an accurate idea about how they are leading, conducting themselves and most importantly, how they are perceived by those who work for them. It can be a very valuable exercise for employees and managers alike, and it ultimately allows for an all-round feedback system that benefits everyone.
If any company is going to recognise what works and what doesn’t when it comes to hiring employees, it’s Google. So the next time you’re looking to add someone new to your company, bear these few points in mind, and who knows, you may completely transform your business’s hiring philosophy.
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