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Employees who share your values are not only great to work with – they stay longer in your company. Let’s talk, today, about how you can recognize candidates and hire employees who do share your values and reinforce your brand. One thing is sure – companies have to be consistent with the message they communicate to the marketplace. And the employees you hire should be consistent with what your company stands for. It’s that simple (and that challenging!).

Hire for Consistency and Build Your Brand

Why is there such a dichotomy between what companies profess (their values—or their “brand”) and whom they choose (their employees) to represent those values? I think it’s because hiring managers are not looking for signs of those values when they’re interviewing. They’re not asking themselves, “Does this employee build or take away from my brand?”

That’s right. We’re taught to look for what the candidate has achieved, how the candidate can do the job, the candidate’s educational background, knowledge of the market, etc. And certainly these are all things we MUST consider. But how do you determine if the candidate is a person who would build your brand?

Here are a few suggestions:

  • Get conversational with your candidate. The more relaxed the conversation, the more we tend to reveal about ourselves.

    Ask open-ended questions. Ask the right questions and you’ll get the right answers. Ask why they did what they did, why they left their previous jobs, why they chose the college they did, etc. Let the candidates tell you their motivations for doing what they’ve done. These questions will give you a great idea of who they really are.

    Key on personal information. If the resume has personal information already there, it’s OK to ask about that information. Volunteer work; membership in any organizations or associations; and hobbies or civic involvement are all great ways to tell who a person is. I’m impressed, for example, with candidates who are Big Brothers or Big Sisters. The “helping hand” mentality goes a long way in the workplace as well.

In the end, there’s nothing as critical as having the right people in your company to build your brand. Before you make an offer, ask yourself, “Does this candidate build or detract from my brand?”

Philip Kemper is Founder/President of Kemper Associates, a 37 year old Chicago-based national executive search firm, specializing in Permanent and Contract staffing for Trade Shows and Exhibits, Staging and Equipment Rental, Business Meetings and Events Production, Video, Training and Incentives and more .His more complete bio is on LinkedIn at: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/philip-kemper/2/795/308/ . You may view Kemper Associates’ web site at: www.Kemperassociates.net , and contact Phil with questions or comments, and employment needs at: Kemperassoc@hotmail.com, or his private phone line: (312) 944-6551.

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