3.2.12 Issue #521 info@mckenziemgmt.com 1-877-777-6151 Forward This Newsletter

Nancy Caudill
Senior Consultant
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How to Interview for Quality Employees
By Nancy Caudill, Senior Consultant

As a management company, there are statements that we dread to hear from the dentist such as: “Susie just gave her two-week notice” or from the employee: “I just gave my notice.” On occasion, I do hear “I let Susie go today” - but truth be told, we usually don’t hear that often enough.

Hearing that a staff member is leaving is never pleasant because it means that we are back to the drawing board and in need of a new employee. First, we must start with tools in the practice that are welcoming to a new employee. Without the following items in place, it is much more difficult to find and keep a good employee:

  • An employee policy manual so there is no question about benefits, practice expectations, office hours, etc.
  • A specific job description for the position.
  • A plan for training the new employee.
  • A performance review after 30 days of employment to cover areas that need improvement.
  • A 90-day review to “invite” the new employee into the practice as part of the team, otherwise they should be gone by now and a new potential employee is being trained.

Good Employee vs. Good Human Being
First, please note that there is a huge difference between a good human being and a good employee. For some reason, employers get this confused and think that they are synonymous. You can be a good person but a lousy employee for the position that you are looking to fill. You can also be a good person but, after two weeks, you are not the right person for this position.

Don’t get confused between “good person” and “good employee.” As soon as you realize that the good person you just employed for the position is not going to work out due to their lack of skill, lack of ability to learn the skill, tardiness, poor use of the English language or whatever the reason is, DON’T keep them. You are only fooling yourself into thinking that things are going to get better - but they don’t. This is the honeymoon and you are seeing them at their BEST!

Resume Reviews
Resumes come in all forms and reviewing them can be tedious and time consuming.  As a result, it is always important to have a “plan” of identifying key things very quickly. Please don’t ask applicants to fax or mail their resumes. It is much easier for you to manage them through emails, and if they are struggling with the use of email, then they won’t work in your high-tech office anyway. Consider the following steps:

1. Look at the Resume Closely
Count the number of misspelled words. Example: reviewing a resume from a hygienist that misspelled “hygienist” on more than one occasion.  Remember that this resume is not spontaneous and the applicant has had plenty of time to review it for errors, ask friends to review it, use spellcheck, etc.  There is NO excuse for misspelled words on a resume.

2. Job History
How many different jobs have they had in the past 5 years? If they have had 5 jobs in 5 years, there is a problem!

3. Call their Cell Phone
Example: the voicemail answers with some obscene music and a message that you would not want your mother to hear. You can gleam insightful information by listening to voicemail greetings.

4. The Cover Letter
You specifically asked in your ad for a cover letter but to your dismay, it is missing. Instead, you receive only a resume with an introduction that indicates they are looking for a wonderful office to work in where they can utilize their skills as a file clerk…and you stated clearly that you are seeking a Schedule Coordinator.

5. Contact Previous Employers
Please do your homework and don’t skip this step! With the applicant’s permission, contact their previous employers. If they don’t give you permission, that is telling in itself. You may ask the following questions: “Were they employed and what were the dates of their employment?” and “Are they eligible for rehire?” It is interesting how many previous employers will say “No” to the rehire question.

For more information on the design of your employee ad and resume screening, consider Sally McKenzie’s book, “How To Hire The Best Employee”  GO HERE

If you would like more information on how McKenzie's Consulting Coaching Programs can help you IMPLEMENT proven strategies, email info@mckenziemgmt.com.

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