Someone once asked me why Walt Disney World, Ritz Carlton, and Nordstroms were so lucky in that they always got such great people working for them. My response – it’s not by luck, it’s planned and managed. A culture is made up of the people you hire; therefore, the recruitment of right fit people is one of the most critical decisions a manager can make.
1. Ask applicants behavioral based scenario questions i.e. “Tell me of a time when you turned around an unhappy customer and how you did it” vs. “are you customer service oriented?”
2. Look for nice people. It is far easier to teach someone the technical tools of most jobs than to teach someone to be nice.
3. Be an example of excellent service in the interview itself. Don’t take interruptions, be prepared for the applicant, and actively listen.
4. State and explain the organization’s Service Philosophy and Service Standards in the interview so the applicant knows upfront that customer service is part of his job.
5. Let applicant know how long the selection process will take so they can plan accordingly and not feel left in the dark.
6. Show courtesy by following up with interviewee even if they don’t get the job. Tell them you appreciated the time and interest she showed in your organization.
The more you consistently define the interview and selection process for all your hiring managers, the less you will have to rely on LUCK!