Saturday, July 04, 2009

Acid Test for Hiring

In his book "Winning," former General Electric CEO Jack Welch says he starts with three acid tests: for integrity, intelligence and maturity - this is not very far from Warren Buffett's own test for integrity, intelligence and passion.

Mr. Welch writes: "People with integrity tell the truth and they keep their word." "They take responsibility for past actions, admit mistakes and fix them." On intelligence, Mr Welch left no doubts that he's not necessarily looking for education, but rather "a strong dose of intellectual curiosity, with a breadth of knowledge to work with or lead other smart people in today's complex world." As for maturity, Mr. Welch says it has nothing to do with age, rather it's a sense that the person "can withstand the heat, handle stress and setbacks, and alternatively, when those wonderful moments arrive, enjoy success with equal parts of joy and humility."

Only if candidates possess those three traits would he then begin to further evaluate what he calls "the four Es." They are:
  • Positive Energy: Does the candidate have the ability to thrive on action and relish change? Will the person be able to start the day with enthusiasm, and end it that way, too? "People with positive energy," writes Mr. Welch, "just love life."
  • The Ability to Energize Others: "People who energize can inspire their teams to take on the impossible," he says. That needs the right combination of knowledge and skills of persuasion.
  • Edge: Mr. Welch defines this as the ability to make tough yes-or-no decisions. "Anyone can look at an issue from every different angle," he writes. "Some people can - and will - analyze those angles indefinitely. But effective people know when to stop assessing and make a tough call, even without total information."
  • Execute: The ability to get the job done. Mr. Welch says experience has taught him that some people can do well on the first three Es, but not have what it takes to get a job over the finish line. He looks to hire people who can make things happen.


Media Mentions said...

Seems to me like the stock market is undergoing some minor shifts, like this one:

Best wishes,

Penny Stocks said...

Jack is overrated.