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From The Archive

47. Don't hire people because you like them.
If you're a hiring manager, a smart candidate will go out of his way to make you like him in an interview. It's a very smart interview tactic. There's nothing wrong in this, unless you let your affinity for the person dominate your hiring decision. The trouble is, even smart managers overlook deficiencies in ability when a candidate is likable.

A few years ago, a seasoned executive with an international company read one of my articles on a plane. He spent most of his time flying around the world hiring people for his telecommunications company. As soon as he landed he called me from the airport. "You just made me realize something that's so obvious: We hire people because we like them. What a huge mistake! The main reason to hire someone is because he proves he can do the work!"

This simple distinction about your view of a candidate can have a profound effect on your business. It's obvious, but it's often overlooked, and it bears repeating. Don't hire people just because you like them; hire them because they prove they can do the job.


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