Values as selection criteria in recruitment

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This issue will share a valuable technique you can implement in the selection process that is relatively underrated and often overlooked. And this is the Values. Here we are using the term “values” in a very pragmatic manner – that which is perceived as “important/interesting/meaningful”.

Why use them as selection criteria?

Values have a significant impact on the way reality is subjectively perceived, or in this specific context – the professional reality. They act as a filter that influences how a situation is interpreted and the meaning that will be attached to it. And maybe the most important factor – it will shape the behavior that the person will have in it.

How you can use them in the recruitment process?

A good starting point would be to determine the type of values needed to successfully fulfill the role’s expectations. As a best practice, you can identify 3 leading ones to use as criteria for matching. For example – “independent decision making”, or loyalty, significance (higher meaning) in the job itself, etc.

Keep in mind that the things candidates deemed as important/significant/interesting/meaningful are not necessarily accessible true direct questions. The far more reliable technique would be to observe them indirectly – true the candidate’s behavior in different situations, the way he presents him/herself, linguistic patterns, etc. Here are 3 practical advice you can use to gain more reliable information about the values.

  1. Unconventional recruitment process

The values are expressed more clearly in an informal environment. If you use standard structured interview questions, it is less likely to assess them correctly, as the candidate can go into the role-fulfilling mode of being the “interviewed one” and filter his answers.

That will significantly impact the quality of the feedback you would receive. Instead, you can use the less-formal, seemingly less structured interviews.

  1. Research in different areas

You can access additional information about the values of the candidate by researching different areas about him. Maybe he/she has a public blog, or some publications/interest that will reveal more about them. You can also use the social networks/media for this (to the extent that is possible).

  1. Decision-making motivation

How she/he made the career choices so far? Especially the motivational impulse about the challenging decisions. What caught his/her attention in the current vacancy – was it the job ad’s design, the company, the team, the product, etc. Does he/she value the significance of the job’s results or being part of a specific team/project? Or the variety of the projects, or the security of the job? You can see what values are guiding the choices and thus get information about the expected future behavior in a common context.

The most important aspect is to view the expression of the values in a higher context, considering a combination of all the above techniques and searching for similar patterns. That way you can get more reliable information about the profile of the candidate and thus advance the ability to predict his/her future behavior.

Go ahead and experiment,

Best of luck!

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