Top 10 Signs You’ve Hired The Wrong Candidate

Top 10 Signs You've Hired The Wrong Candidate

Picture the scene: you’ve advertised for a new employee, conducted the interviews and selected who you think is the ideal candidate. Their first week of work rolls around and it goes without saying that you’ve got high hopes for what your sparkling new employee can and will achieve at your company.

At first all seems to be going well, but then as the first week rolls into the second and so on you start to get the feeling that something isn’t quite right. You can’t quite put your finger on what it is – but something’s nagging in the back of your mind and telling you you’ve made the wrong decision.

Hiring the wrong employee isn’t uncommon – and it’s probably happened to majority of businesses at least once. Why? Because unfortunately quite often the person you met in the interview isn’t the person who turns up for work in that first week.

That said; there are a few major telltale signs that the employee you’ve taken on isn’t going to last at your business. Here are the top 10 things you need to watch out for.

1. Asking For Special Treatment: The standard working hours for your business are 9-5.30 with an hour for lunch. Everyone works the same hours and it’s in everyone’s contract – but that doesn’t stop your new employee from asking if they can change their working hours to suit their needs. Now, while this might not be an issue for some employees, and the new flexible working ruling means it is something that will need to be considered, it could suggest that the employee feels like they might be entitled to special treatment… And this could just be the start…

2. Not Listening & Making The Same Mistakes: OK, so it’s going to take a while for things to sink in and for your new employee to ‘get’ stuff – but if they’ve claimed to be a ‘quick learner’ and they keep making major mistakes, such as getting your company name wrong when making a sales call, you could be in big trouble…

3. Late/Ill In The First Week: Sometimes things happen which are out of our control, but if an employee turns up late for work or phones in sick in the first week alarm bells could start to ring. Why? Because it could suggest they’re not organised and/or willing to let you down at the first opportunity…

4. Moaning About Tasks Given: The worst thing a new employee could do is moan about the work that has been given to them. Why? Because it gives off the impression that they think they’re too good for tasks – and if they’re unhappy about the work that has been given to them in their first week – what are they going to be like in a few months when they’re no longer classed as ‘new’ and the work really ramps up? Which leads me nicely onto my next point…

5. Saying ‘That’s Not My Job’: Uh-oh! If an employee thinks they can stick to their job description in the first week you’re going to have major issues. The problem with this one is that a lot of the time things come up that don’t really fall under anyone’s job description but that need to be done – and someone needs to do them. A good employee will happily take on any work you give them and be a real ‘team player’… and if they don’t do this in the first week, there’s no suggestion they’re likely to do it further down the line.

6. Doing The ‘Bare Minimum’: A new employee should be keen to impress you in their first week and go above and beyond… this might mean doing more than is expected of them or even starting work early or staying late. If an employee is clocking in at 9 and clocking out at 5.30 on the dot and only doing what you ask, it could be a sign that they’re not really fussed about impressing you and/or staying put at your business.

 7. Going Out To Make Calls All The Time: OK, so everyone needs to make personal calls in working hours sometimes, but definitely not in their first week! Making personal calls in their first week is pretty cheeky (particularly if they’ve not got the ‘OK’ from you) and again, could suggest they’re just not taking the job seriously.

8. Causing Conflict With Other Employees: In their first week a new employee should try their best to fit in with their new colleagues and bond… not start a war! While you don’t want an employee who will let themselves be walked all over, you don’t want one who will start a fight over a stolen post-it note either. Keep your eyes peeled for any unnecessary arguments involving your new employee and be ready to act.

9. Rush To Claim The Glory: If your new employee has been working on a project with a few colleagues and they then rush to claim the glory, you’ve got an issue. Why? Because your new employee isn’t being a team player – and their actions are bound to upset the rest of existing workforce… disrupting the harmony you’ve worked so hard to build up!

10. Searching For Other Jobs In Working Hours: Surely an employee wouldn’t be as stupid as to search for new jobs while they’re working for you? They might – and if they do, you know what you need to do…

As ever I’m keen to hear what you think. Do you have any other telltale signs that employees need to look for from their new employee? Or do you think some of the points above are a bit unfair? Leave me a comment below.

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