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Vacancy: Fitting in – easy – or not?

16 Jun 2011

“Fitting in” – a much used phrase and, perhaps, much misunderstood.

When I was a rookie Manager just starting to recruit for my first sales team, I was given some advice by my then boss.

He said there are five things you need to get right when recruiting:

  1. Can the person do the job i.e. right skills, experience etc?
  2. Do they want to do the job i.e. motivation?
  3. Do they live in the right place?
  4. Are they affordable?
  5. Will they “fit in”?

At the time I thought this was too simplistic, but I’ve come to realise that these are right on the money.

The first 4 can be objectively assessed without too much difficulty.

It’s the fifth that causes all the problems!

In the recruitment context it usually means how someone will adapt and “fit in” to an employer.

Get it right, and the person will likely be a success (allowing that their experience, qualifications and skills are all there!).

Get it wrong, and the person will probably fail or at least not enjoy the role.

One analogy that I like is if someone goes to work on a Monday morning and it feels like putting on a heavy suit of armour. They struggle through the week and then on Friday gratefully take it off. Thus unencumbered they can be themselves for the weekend! On the other hand if the job fits you really well, you scarcely notice the difference between work and play!

“Fitting in” is an area that I pay a lot of attention to as a recruiter.