“Our most productive investment remains our people. It is through the dedication, skills and initiation of our people that Visy Industries has prospered and will continue to move ahead.” – Late Visy chief and founder of one of the country’s most successful companies, Richard Pratt.
What Pratt said is nothing new, but it is very true. Employees have always been and will continue to be the most important determinant of a business’s success. Unfortunately, hiring the best employees is tricky business.
Sourcing superior players from your arch rival, promoting premium employees from within or enticing exceptional applicants off the street generally means forking out top tier salaries.
But don’t be fooled, by no means is a big budget a prerequisite to getting great people on board.
Here are three less considered, slightly contrarian approaches to recruiting the people that will help your business “prosper and continue to move ahead”.
If an applicant doesn’t have a background in your industry, don’t immediately rule a line through them.
People with enough confidence in their ability and conviction to make a career move are often well equipped with the skills to excel in any job. Once trained up in how to do something new, exceptional employees will shine at almost any profession.
Accountants scratch the surface of issues, paramedics work well under pressure, engineers look at things from all angles. Don’t categorise career switchers based on the industry they’re from, look at the qualities inherent in the job they used to do.
The other advantage of career switchers is knowing they wouldn’t have chucked in a career elsewhere to come knocking on your door if they weren’t serious about the job.
Sportspeople, whether professional or casual, make great employees.
Competitive sport, especially team sport, instils a range of highly sought after and hugely valuable personal qualities found in all great business leaders.
Self-discipline, team work, leadership, training skills and motivation are all important, transferrable qualities taken from the footy oval to the office.
These are skills so actively pursued and fostered by successful businesses that identifying them at the recruitment stage can save a lot of time and expense.
And not only do sportspeople boast these great mental qualities, but odds on they’ll also be fit and full of energy too.
Inexperience is always a gamble, but one that can reap huge dividends with a little application.
Young people work hard to try justify their place and want to repay the faith showed in hiring them on the back of nothing more than a piece of paper.
Hard work and impressionability aside, they also bring great energy and enthusiasm to the workplace and are probably way more in touch with latest trends and technology than you are.
As business continues its emigration online, this is valuable knowledge.
Taking on youngsters may cost a bit of time in training, but spending bucks teaching your own talent pool of dedicated, bright young things will reap considerable rewards.
So next time you’re combing through resumes, pondering that empty chair in the office, be sure to give these three applicants another look.
You might just find someone who fits your shoes.