As experienced headhunters in Northern California, Pacific ExecSearch knows there will be times (hopefully few and far between) when you hire someone and that person turns around and quits six months later. However, considering the cost of a hiring mistake, it’s best to minimize that scenario as much as possible. But this can be tough when you’re hiring for demanding positions, especially those at the senior level. To help you hire the best fit candidates for tough-to-fill roles, here are a few questions to consider:

1. What does the role entail?

Before jumping into the recruiting portion of the hiring process, it’s vital to study the role and really understand what knowledge, skills and abilities are important for successful performance. Another area to evaluate is the dynamics of the team the person will be leading. This will help you better identify those who are the best fit for the job.

2. What makes other people in demanding roles successful at your company?

Specifically, what personality traits and leadership styles make them good at their jobs? Are they excellent communicators? Are they fearless risk takers? Do they have a certain leadership style that works especially well? Also, look at what common experiences, accomplishments, background details and credentials top performers at your company have. Your goal here is determine what exactly distinguishes them – so you can then look for those same traits, abilities, and backgrounds when you’re hiring for a new role.

3. How will I screen for those skills and abilities?

You know what you’re looking for in a candidate. But how do you screen for those specifics during the hiring process? It comes down to asking good interview questions and then following up so you can get behind the candidate mask and understand how the candidate thinks and will perform once on the job.

For example, if you’re looking for a candidate who can restructure and get a dysfunctional department back on track, ask them about a time when they had to manage a challenging or underperforming employee or team. Then ask a lot of follow up questions, such as “Why did you take that approach?, “Walk me through how you came to that decision,” and “Would you have done anything differently and, if so, why?”

4. How will I promote the role?

Part of your job when you’re hiring for a leadership position is to promote the job and all its perks. However, if you have a position that’s especially challenging or demanding, it’s only fair to make the candidates aware of the realities they will face once on the job. So talk about both the ups and downs that come with job. That way, the person you ultimately do hire will walk into the position with a more accurate sense of the road ahead.

Hiring for a leadership position at any company can be challenging. However, when it’s an especially demanding role – whether due to the type of work, the hours, or the travel involved – it’s important to be even more careful and discerning during the hiring process.

If you’d like more help with executive hiring, call Pacific Staffing. As experienced headhunters in Northern California, our team knows how to source, evaluate and help companies hire mission critical professionals from all over the country for top leadership positions. To learn more about how we can help your organization, please contact us today.