I was checking out at the supermarket this morning when I heard three seasoned employees discussing whether or not part-timers really want to work. The oldest employee commented how part-timers don't want to work because many quit after a week on the job. His co-worker, who appeared to be a baby boomer, politely pushed back and asked why he thought this meant they didn't want to work. He went on to explain that perhaps these people found other jobs that were more suited for them. I of course chuckled as I left the store thanking them for this morning's blog post.
I'm sure there are part-time workers who really don't want to work just like there are full-time workers who really don't want to work. At some point management has to take some responsibility for hiring people who are not well suited for the job. Here's just one example. On Facebook my niece, who is an assistant manager in a retail store, posted the following question: "What is the point of having a manager who calls in sick every other day?" I for one couldn't really answer that question except to say why the heck is that manager still there when there are hundreds of thousands of qualified people looking for work? But that's an entirely different blog posting.
So here is my advice for those of you in management. The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. Ask the right questions and listen carefully for the way candidates respond. Stop trying to love the person that is in front of you so you can get the darn job filled. Effective interviewing is a skill that can be learned, but it takes practice and discipline to stay the course. If you are interested in improving your quality of hires consider taking a course in behavior-based interviewing. If you'd prefer a self-study guide, then consider my new Selecting for Success: The Complete Toolkit for Hiring Top Talent. I'll post a link to this newly released guide next week when the product is up on my site.