Help! Interview technique/employing

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curly girl

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Hi, advice needed please. Im having a bit of a mare employing at the moment. Ive just had to let a staff member go as even 6 months in she wasnt making a profit and her work wasnt up to standard. I did all i could to help her but she was regularly late and didnt seem to have much drive or ambition (which became more obvious as time went on). At interview she seemed fine so obviously im a bit dubious to make the same mistake again.
Last time i recruited i started with a face to face verbal interview, then shortlisted for a practical interview and made my decision based on my observations.
I’m considering a full days trial as a final interview stage this time around but wouldnt know wether to ask clients to come in for discounted treatments on that day or ask family/friends to model for them. Im eager to build a good team rather than just employ new people regularly. For the right candidate there would be great training oportunities and hopefully a long career in a busy, growing salon.

Can any experienced employers out there share any tips/tricks that have helped find good staff please?
 

Haircutz

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Nothing wrong with your original approach, although a days trial sounds very sensible. Some people can be very anxious and might calm down a bit more once they get stuck in.
Just because she didn’t turn out to be great, it doesn’t mean the next one will be the same so try not to judge every new applicant too harshly. I know it’s hard when you feel let down.
Do you know why it didn’t work out with her?
Was she newly qualified? Do you think she took a while to realise that beauty wasn’t for her perhaps?
What about asking the candidates to do the odd treatment on your staff and then ask them for their feedback?
I always attach more importance to a good attitude and friendly disposition as I think the basic skills can always be improved on with decent support and training, assuming the employee is keen to learn.
In interviews, after the basics, I tend to suggest hypothetical scenarios and ask what they’d do if they were left in charge. This way, you can get a feel for how they might approach a situation.
I’m not worried if the answer is technically wrong but I want to see if they have some common sense. (!)
 

Persephannie

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I work an office job and over the last 3 years we've seen a huge improvement in the office dynamic and productivity since changing the hiring model from skill based to fit/culture based. I too believe that it is much easier to fill a knowledge gap and find someone with an excellent ability to learn, great attitude and work ethic. Those qualities are much more difficult to teach. I hope you find the right person. Good luck and let us know how it works out!
 

squidgernetball

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As above. Attitude is SO important and skills can be built on x
 

curly girl

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Thanks for the reply ladies. I took her on based on the fact she seemed eager to learn and although her skill set seemed basic I thought I could work with her on that. She was recently qualified but had just done 6 months of spa work before coming to me. I thought it was mainly a confidence issue originally but as time went on it seemed more of a life experience issue. She seem to lack the skills to chat to clients, didn’t “switch on” or show initiative in the daily running of the salon and her work became too much of a liability. Many clients with wax ending up in their hair :0 and lots of complaints.
I started my own business 5 years ago and I’ve needed somebody else along side me for the past 3 years really but I’ve put it off due to trusting somebody else with what has grown into a good reputation and loyal customer base. I think I’m just a little spooked that my worst fears for the business were confirmed. I do remain positive to find the right candidate though and the information you have given me has been really helpful Thankyou :) I’ll have to restart with a positive attitude and some learned lessons along the way and hopefully I’ll soon be updating this thread with good news!
 

Haircutz

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I thought it was mainly a confidence issue originally but as time went on it seemed more of a life experience issue. She seem to lack the skills to chat to clients, didn’t “switch on” or show initiative in the daily running of the salon and her work became too much of a liability.
Yes, I’ve experienced that previously too. That’s the reason for my questions about hypothetical scenarios as you want to ensure your staff can think for themselves. The downside is that rival salons will try to poach good staff so you need to ensure they really love working for you and don’t take them for granted after they’ve been with you a while. (All good relationships need regular nurturing.)
 

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