What to Do When You Make a Major Hiring Mistake

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“We’d love to have you join our team of employees.” When spoken to the right job candidate, these are life-giving words. If the individual being offered the position is exceptional, these words can even be game changing for a company. But, what happens when such words are spoken to the wrong type of candidate? This is a common occurrence. Employers think they’ve found a diamond-in-the-rough, but their instincts are proven wrong when the individual becomes a problem employee a few weeks (or days) down the road.

Have you ever made a hiring mistake? Or, are you in the midst of dealing with the ramifications of a recent hiring mistake? Not to worry — you can mitigate the situation by taking the following steps:

#1 — Don’t beat yourself up – So, you picked a bad egg. That means you’re human. Remind yourself that everyone makes hiring mistakes. Whatever you do, don’t pick yourself apart trying to decipher why you made a bad decision. What’s done is done, and beating yourself up won’t help the situation. Learn what you can from the experience and then move toward a solution.

#2 — Coach the employee – It could be that your employee is not fulfilling his or her duties due to a lack of training. Fill in any training gaps by coaching the employee to success. To the best of your ability, see that your worker knows how to operate in his or her position. If this doesn’t work, you may want to transition the individual to an entirely different role within your company.

#3 — Give the employee a different role – Sometimes the best way to correct a hiring mistake is to assign an employee to another role. Perhaps there is a position within your company that would be a better fit for your employee. If the person is willing to transition roles, ensure that he or she gets plenty of coaching and support. If you choose this path, “Watch out that you don’t just move your problems to someone else – that is unethical and will destroy your credibility in the long run,” writes Pinnacle Placements.

#4 — Let the individual go – No one likes to fire employees. Sometimes, however, you just have to. If you’ve tried coaching an employee AND transitioning him or her to another role and have still seen no improvement, it could be time to let the person go. The article How to Fix a Hiring Mistake advises employers to “help the (employee) move on. Quickly. Help them move on to somewhere they can be successful. Everyone involved will thank you for it.”

Can you make some time to attempt to coach your problem employee to success? How about transitioning the worker to another position – will you give that a try? If need be, are you willing to let the employee go for the good of everyone? If so, you can clean up any hiring mistake you’ve made.

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