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A Simple Guide to Interviewing for Attitude

Bad attitude signMark Murphy wrote a terrific book on interviewing for attitude, which I highly recommend (also see this interview). His company, Leadership IQ, conducted an impressive survey discovering that 46 percent of new hires failed within 18 months, and that 89 percent of the time it was for attitude, not a lack of technical skills.

Interviewing for attitude presents a dilemma: Most people are on their best behavior when interviewing and even during their first 6-12 months of employment.

You may not realize you have a problem on your hands until the new hire has been trained and is a fully functioning part of your team. Knowing you’ll have to begin the selection process all over again — a long and costly procedure — makes it harder to part with the employee. Meanwhile, the good-natured people on the team have to pick up the slack, putting strain on your best people and leading to harmful side effects. Burnout, discontent with management, and customer service deficiencies are likely to develop.

Since this is a major problem in many organizations, guerrilla tactics are needed. (more…)

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