The 411 on Hiring an All-Star Employee

Let’s face it, many of us dread the hiring process. From screening through countless resumes to days and days of phone interviews that lag on, it can be completely EXHAUSTING. The future of your company basically depends on the decisions that you make during the hiring process, so making little tweaks to the process can pay off in the long haul. Let’s dive right into how you can hire and select the right applicants that will translate into rockstar team members now!


Define criteria for success

When considering your company’s mission and values, what is your unique definition of success? Now, how does success look for each unique position in your company?

Create a word cloud with ‘exceptional’ in the centre. Now, what other words come to mind? There is no wrong answer here because what’s ‘exceptional’ is different based on each company’s unique values.

Some questions you might consider when asking this question include:

  • What makes an exceptional applicant stand out from an average one?
  • What would an exceptional applicant accomplish during the first 90 days that would make them stand out?
  • What skills are critical to be considered exceptional?
  • How fast do I expect them to grow?
  • What are some leadership traits that this applicant will show?

Look at your process

Now that you’ve gathered an idea of the qualities your business craves, ask yourself: how does my hiring and selection process match these expectations? To break that question down further, what are you doing to stand out?

In today’s uber-competitive marketplace, many companies are steering away from the traditional Q&A interview. With many other options to measure both expertise and fit, it no longer feels like the best way to weed out applicants. The best approach is so much more complex than just reviewing resumes and asking those cooker-cutter questions.

Here’s a little secret: outside-the-box interview methods will propel your business ahead of competitors. To attract top-tier talent, set a stage that they will be attracted to. You don’t want to attract an applicant who isn’t willing to allocate effort into a job application.. But flip the switch. We can almost guarantee that a next-level prospective team member is seeking a workplace that goes above and beyond, too. It’s mutual! To create a harmonious workplace relationship, the choice is ultimately a two-way street.

Set a standard

For applicants looking for a job at the Honda dealership, I have created a four-page employment history form. Yes, four pages! And you wouldn’t believe the amount of times that I’ve heard “Do I really need to fill out this WHOLE thing?!” Creating a challenge right off the bat weeds out applicants that are not willing to go the extra mile to make an impression.

Then, do yourself a favour and forget that single interview process.. it just doesn’t cut it any longer. First off, there is only a limited amount of information that you can acquire during that first meet and greet. You’ll want to think about that information, ask further questions and meet again. If you are setting an impression that it is an easy job to get, what are you telling them about the performance expectations in the workplace?

And then continue to add on more steps

Don’t hesitate to add in a second or third round of interviews, either. Each meeting provides a new chance to learn about someone more intimately. Personally, I love the idea of the ‘test drive’ – and no, this doesn’t only apply to the automotive industries! To ‘test drive’ an applicant put their skills to action in a task that is relevant to their job application. For instance, if you are hiring a cook, ask them to walk through the preparation of their favourite dish on camera. Watching the process unveil itself, from pre-prep cleanliness to the careful chopping of the produce to the plating and description of the dish will offer an invaluable look into an applicant’s ideas come to life. Hiring top applicants involves seeing what they are really capable of. What better test than one that is hands-on and applies to the position at hand?

Create human connection

My last piece of advice would be to invite them out for a nice dinner. Really, how often have you seen this during a hiring process? At dinner, keep an eye on their behaviours. Watch how they treat the waitstaff, witness the flow of conversations within the team and explore their mannerisms. This is the last opportunity to see if there are any red flags before investing in a long-term relationship with someone who will provide immense value to your company or organization.


Exceptional or top-tier applicants will be interviewing you as much as you are interviewing them. And with the right set of qualifications, they can be choosy! While most hiring includes basic steps like interviewing, screening and training, throwing a wrench into the typical processes will create the right impression that will help you stand out, too. The right people in the right positions are the assets that will make your company grow. Test out these tricks in 2021!

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