As Maya Angelou once said, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Similarly, when it comes to finding the right person, it’s not just about skills, it’s about who they are and how they act.
As far as “team building exercises” go, actually building a team is probably the hardest as hiring the right people is a multifaceted challenge. Sure, the end goal of finding a competent, reliable employee who’s a good fit for their job and the organization is important, but the most important part of finding that person may be who you’re considering and how you find them.
When writing a job listing, keep in mind that candidates aren’t just trying to advertise themselves to you, you’re also trying to present why your company is the one for them and what makes you stand out from every other workplace. The fact that 80% of staff have stayed on for a decade or more indicates that employees are valued and treated fairly, and the siren song of bagels and fruit every Friday is a nice touch that make them feel appreciated too.
One major tipping point for applicants is experience: for example, entry-level jobs shouldn’t expect years of experience (that’s why they’re entry-level), so consider if you’re scaring off people who aren’t already in your niche. Similarly, in order to diversify your applicant pool, emphasize qualities, like ability to learn new skills quickly and respond to clients a friendly and empathetic demeanor, rather than requiring certain levels of familiarity with specific industry products that can be easily learned during onboarding. You could be missing out on candidates who are self-selecting out of your hiring pool because they don’t have skills easily acquired in a matter of days or weeks.
Focus on hiring the right person, not the right skillset. Although it’s tempting to go with someone who has performed the same (or similar) role before, unusual hires can often be the best fit for a job. Sure, someone with a luxury retail sales background might at first seem like an odd choice, but they’re also comfortable working in fast-paced environments, developing friendly personal relationships quickly, working with client’s needs and budgets, and learning quickly. Need someone methodical and detail-oriented? A programmer who’s used to combing through 1,000 lines of code for that one missing semicolon may be an offbeat but excellent choice.
As Maya Angelou once said, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Similarly, when it comes to finding the right person, it’s not just about skills, it’s about who they are and how they act. There are thousands of highly skilled individuals out there who can use Microsoft Office, have great organizational skills, and are familiar with the software that you use—but how many of them are compassionate, friendly individuals who your clients can connect to? You can teach someone how to sort data columns in Excel, but it’s much more difficult to teach them compassion.
Not only is personality important to cultural fit, it can also determine how conflict plays out in the office and affects client response and retention at every level. For example, study after study shows that when it comes to medical malpractice suits, doctor-patient relationships and poor communication are one of the most common citations by patients pursuing legal action. “Doctors sued most often were complained about by patients twice as much as those who were not, and poor communication was the most common complaint.”
And for those who weren’t sued? “Decades-old studies have shown that primary care physicians sued less often are those more likely to spend time educating patients about their care, more likely to use humor and laugh with their patients and more likely to try to get their patients to talk and express their opinions.” Another study surveying 277 patients and relatives pursuing malpractice suits found that, “Patients taking legal action wanted greater honesty, an appreciation of the severity of the trauma they had suffered, and assurances that lessons had been learnt from their experiences.”
Your team may not be performing surgery, but every aspect of client relations from the support staff to advisor-client relationships is still based on trust and mutual respect. After all, clients should be picky about who gets to handle their financial future. No one wants to see a doctor (or advisor) who isn’t invested in them or their well-being, so when it comes down to it hiring the right person is more than what they can do; how they make clients feel may be even more important.
These articles are prepared for general purposes and are not intended to provide advice or encourage specific behavior. Before taking any action, Advisors and Plan Sponsors should consult with their compliance, finance and legal teams.
Before leaping into the unknown, we recommend a thorough examination of your plan. Because we are experts in the field, we know the marketplace and know what your existing vendor is capable of offering. Through this examination, we can help you optimize the service you receive.get xpress proposal