The key to delivering your strategy is having a strong and meaningful culture. The key to a strong and meaningful culture is having the right people, in the right roles. The challenge many of us are having is that placing the right people in the right roles has never been more, well, challenging.

And yet we continue the same tired practices that lead to exhausting results:

· Posting boring job descriptions

· Holding bland interviews

· Relying on hiring platforms to differentiate candidates

Change the Game

You have to change the game — by changing your thinking and habits — in a meaningful way to ensure different results.

When jobs were posted in newspapers, the cost was determined by the amount of space used. It forced companies and hiring managers to be creative with their job postings — then called “help wanted ads.”

Hiring platforms have destroyed the concept of help wanted ads. Now what applicants see is a job description of 800 or more words that doesn’t excite.

Instead of posting job descriptions, post an ad that grabs the person’s attention by attracting their heart and mind. The ad needs to answer the primary question: Why do I want to be a part of this company?

Get marketing involved in the hiring process to attract great people, like you work to attract great customers.

Explain Goals, Not Duties

Job descriptions simply explain a laundry list of duties. The problem is that those duties are a snapshot in time, and may or may not be relevant six months into the role.

After you have attracted great candidates with a powerful ad and had a 15-minute initial screening conversation, send them a document outlining the role’s four key elements:

· What are three to five key goals for the person in the role?

· What are three to five unique aspects of the role?

· What are three to five interesting things about the boss/manager?

· What are three to five key reasons the person wants to work for the company?

This information should be sent to the candidate prior to an in-depth conversation about the role.

Don’t Over-Rely on Hiring Platforms

Technology is our friend, not the sole answer. Leaders cannot expect algorithms to solve their hiring challenges, and have to build humanity — e.g.: emotion, passion, critical thinking, etc. — into the process.

Add one of these tricks to your hiring process to attract the best candidates and build stronger connections with your future team members:

· After in-depth conversations with the candidates, have the two or three finalists submit a short five- to eight-minute video explaining how they will deliver on the goals you outline and why they are excited to work for your company. The connection they make during that video is a great way to determine the effort, energy, and creativity they put into an assignment.

· When checking references, work to learn how to best interact with the new team member. Ask questions like:

o How does the person best learn and take on new ideas and approaches?

o What warning signs do we need to look for that will let us know that we will need to take a step back and realign the team / expectations?

There are great people out there to help carry your culture and strategy forward. Attract them by capturing their hearts and minds by adding unconventional steps to your hiring process.

Bruce Gresham and the team at AppliedVisionWorks help business owners and teams reach their goals faster. Learn more at, or connect via e-mail at

This article originally appeared in the July/August, 2021 issue of Mailing Systems Technology.