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  • Who Do You Hire?

    What sort of qualifications do you look for when your interviewing potential new hires?
    National Protective Agency
    Auburn Maine
    1-800-292-4965
    www.nationalprotective.net

  • #2
    Most of my employee requirements are on my website www.wethingtonenterprises.com
    in the "about us" section. And I am a huge "gut" feeling person. I usually like to get off-duty police/peace officers.

    Comment


    • #3
      As a Veteran I like to see a Vet in front of me - or a LEO background. But I have hired plenty of people from outside of those demographics. Education is important but will not overshadow "real-world" operational experience.

      I prefer a behavioral interview as this demands more input from the candidate.
      "The path to paradise begins in hell."
      — Dante Alighieri

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by DazednadConfused View Post
        As a Veteran I like to see a Vet in front of me - or a LEO background. But I have hired plenty of people from outside of those demographics. Education is important but will not overshadow "real-world" operational experience.

        I prefer a behavioral interview as this demands more input from the candidate.

        I agree with your statement 100%, I am a Vet as well. And believe it or not, I have a psychologist on staff, and she sits in on all of my interviews! Its great!
        National Protective Agency
        Auburn Maine
        1-800-292-4965
        www.nationalprotective.net

        Comment


        • #5
          There are the basic requirements that any successfull candidate must meet, once those have been met. I generally take into account the person in all aspects (experience, training, demeanor/attitude/personality shown during the interview and skills assessment phases) and try to fit that to the specific shift I am hiring them for. An example would be if I am hiring for reception, I want someone who is strong in customer service skills and can prioritize things quickly. If I am hiring for a single officer shift, I want an officer who is confident and sure of themselves but not to the point they are a jerk. Its really hard that I look for any one thing. I also go for diversity of backgrounds, I like having some people who are LEO, some who are veterans, some who are FRES, some prior security and some with no security, military or public safety background. I think by having a wide range of backgrounds, it allows me to draw more and better opinions about how to solve problems. I like try and have my staff work as a team as much as possible and thus I am open to their thoughts.

          A side note, just because I am willing to listen to an officer's thoughts and opinions does not mean that I will change a policy or procedure. It just simply means I accept that I am a human and subject to error, and someone else may have a better way of doing things.
          Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. - 1 Corinthians 16:13

          The cleanliness of our hearts, The strength of our limbs, and commitment to our promise.

          My military contract is up and over. However, I never needed to affirm that I would defend the constitution, our freedoms, our way of life from enemies both domestic and foreign. Do not think that since I am no longer in the military, I will not pick up a weapon to defend my family, my home or my country. - Me!

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          • #6
            We like vets - they know how to take orders, but they also know how to work independently, and they don't panic in emergencies. For day shifts we tend to hire those with strong customer service backrounds, since there is a lot of public contact.

            The biggest thing we look for is "common sense" - we try to train them for anything and everything, but there's always something new or unusual that comes up. They either have it, or they don't. If they don't have common sense, they don't last long...

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Leatherneck View Post
              I agree with your statement 100%, I am a Vet as well. And believe it or not, I have a psychologist on staff, and she sits in on all of my interviews! Its great!
              Do you inform your applicants that she is a psychologist prior to the interview, or obtain their consent for her to be present? In a lot of jurisdictions, you can't conduct "stealth psychological exams" on people, especially in the first stages of the hiring process (prior to making a job offer) because these fall under the rules for medical exams. Is she a licensed practitioner? You might be getting into some tall weeds here, bro'.
              Last edited by SecTrainer; 12-24-2010, 09:20 AM.
              "Every betrayal begins with trust." - Brian Jacques

              "I can't predict the future, but I know that it'll be very weird." - Anonymous

              "There is nothing new under the sun." - Ecclesiastes 1:9

              "History, with all its volumes vast, hath but one page." - Lord Byron

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by SecTrainer View Post
                Do you inform your applicants that she is a psychologist prior to the interview, or obtain their consent for her to be present? In a lot of jurisdictions, you can't conduct "stealth psychological exams" on people, especially in the first stages of the hiring process (prior to making a job offer) because these fall under the rules for medical exams. Is she a licensed practitioner? You might be getting into some tall weeds here, bro'.


                I have all my bases covered! She is a clinical social worker, and all of my applicants know why she is there. It is perfectly legal in my state. But you do have a good point, I would never go this route without doing some research first!





                National Protective Agency
                Auburn Maine
                1-800-292-4965
                www.nationalprotective.net

                Comment


                • #9
                  As long as the minimun requirements are met, I like to see someone who has good customer service or interpersonnel skills. Our site has a lot of client contact. I will not hire a slob. If you come in looking like a street bum (yes it has happened) you aren't going to get far. I am not asking for a 3-piece suit, but I do expect my interviewees to be clean and in clean clothes. Experience is good, but if I think you can be molded then I will give you a chance.
                  "The Emperor is most displeased with your apparent lack of progress. I am here to put you back on schedule."

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Son-Of-A-Pilot View Post
                    As long as the minimun requirements are met, I like to see someone who has good customer service or interpersonnel skills. Our site has a lot of client contact. I will not hire a slob. If you come in looking like a street bum (yes it has happened) you aren't going to get far. I am not asking for a 3-piece suit, but I do expect my interviewees to be clean and in clean clothes. Experience is good, but if I think you can be molded then I will give you a chance.
                    When we used to have 24 hour a day security we didn't want people boithering the front desk staff or going into the administration office area so the appliucations were kept at the security office for all departments. I would throw out an application if the person didn't bother to bring a pen with them. Coming in to apply for a job being unprepared like that is a good indicator of how your work habits are.
                    I enforce rules and regulations, not laws.
                    Security Officers. The 1st First Responders.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I look for individuals who have some law enforcement, corrections, or prior security experience from a respectable organization. I also look at individuals who have at least two years of education. One major important trait that is desirable is a solid work history. Many times I see applicants who have only stayed at jobs for a few months at a time and this is of concern since so much time/money is put into training, uniforms, and salary/benefits.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Security Chief View Post
                        I look for individuals who have some law enforcement, corrections, or prior security experience from a respectable organization. I also look at individuals who have at least two years of education. One major important trait that is desirable is a solid work history. Many times I see applicants who have only stayed at jobs for a few months at a time and this is of concern since so much time/money is put into training, uniforms, and salary/benefits.
                        Amazing how many times the application and/or resume clearly point to problems of various kinds and yet are either completely missed or are not explored further in order to understand them. "He quit after six months!" they complain, but when you ask them to pull the individual's resume, you see that he's always been a "traveler", or a "malcontent", or that his life has been chaotic and interfered with his ability to get to work reliably. It was right there for anyone to see, but no one saw it (or ignored it).

                        The question is, why do we think he'll be any different when he comes to work for us? When I've asked this question of employers, the answer always seems to be a mixture of groundless hope and magical thinking - sometimes with a bit of "I thought maybe he'd grown up" or "Everyone deserves a second chance" thrown in.

                        This is a good one: "Well, he's married with two kids now". And that means exactly what?

                        Some employers "feel sorry" for the applicant, seeming to believe that they're running a rehab center where rotten employees can come to "straighten up their lives". Well, that's okay as long as you know that's what you're doing and you're prepared for the inevitable consequences.

                        Some employers take the attitude: "It's all a crap shoot anyway, so there's no point in trying to improve the odds."

                        Or...and this is the worst: They blithely accept the applicant's lame explanations, which can usually be summarized as "Every one of my previous employers (or supervisors or jobs or coworkers) was crappy." This makes you a co-dependent, enabling and participating in the lousy employee's mental or social disorder, and validating his self-delusions.

                        These aren't "reasons" for hiring someone. They're just excuses for making poor decisions.

                        Hire tough...manage easy. It's the title of a great book, and even without reading the book at all it's the best insight you can have when it comes to hiring. It should be your motto. When it comes to employees, history is prologue. And what's more, if you could have access to their juvenile records in school, etc., you'd discover that the rotten traits they have as adults stretch all the way back into their adolescence and beyond. Do some people "square away" after a rocky period of employment? Sure. The question is whether that's a chance that you and your business can afford to take. You're playing with loaded dice, so make sure you know that's what you're doing.

                        If you decide to take a chance despite the plain evidence this applicant is a lamer, the only way I know of to hedge your bet is to exercise very tight, scrupulous supervision of the employee for a significant period of time, be very cautious about increasing his responsibilities, and be prepared to fold your hand at the first sign this isn't going to work out.

                        Are you set up to do all that?

                        Can you afford the extra investment?

                        Can you absorb the probable loss?

                        If not, you shouldn't be running a rehab center. Satisfy your charitable urges with a donation to your favorite charity instead. It will be cheaper, and your money will do someone some good.
                        Last edited by SecTrainer; 01-06-2011, 11:17 AM.
                        "Every betrayal begins with trust." - Brian Jacques

                        "I can't predict the future, but I know that it'll be very weird." - Anonymous

                        "There is nothing new under the sun." - Ecclesiastes 1:9

                        "History, with all its volumes vast, hath but one page." - Lord Byron

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by SecTrainer View Post
                          Or...and this is the worst: They blithely accept the applicant's lame explanations, which can usually be summarized as "Every one of my previous employers (or supervisors or jobs or coworkers) was crappy." This makes you a co-dependent, enabling and participating in the lousy employee's mental or social disorder, and validating his self-delusions.
                          My question for this is: How do far into this do you look? I worked for one company that had probably a record high turnover rate. I started one week and, two weeks later, none of those guys were still around. Management was awful and I cut out as soon as an opening appeared elsewhere. In another company, I literally worked for eight minutes. The FTO I was assigned took us to Chili's to falsify our patrol hit paperwork and then told me he usually left halfway through the shift. I had a buddy meet me and left my uniform shirts with this hack.

                          Sometimes, the company does suck and jumping ship is the only reasonable way to deal with it. What you appear to be saying will shaft the officer who was desperate for a job and got on board in the first place.
                          A wise son hears his father's instruction,but a scoffer does not listen to rebuke. Proverbs 13:1

                          "My “Black-Ops” history ensures that you will never know about the missions I accepted in my younger days, and Vietnam still shudders when it hears the name of a an assasin so skillful and deadly, he is remembered decades later. " G-45

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by CTEXSEC1 View Post
                            My question for this is: How do far into this do you look? I worked for one company that had probably a record high turnover rate. I started one week and, two weeks later, none of those guys were still around. Management was awful and I cut out as soon as an opening appeared elsewhere. In another company, I literally worked for eight minutes. The FTO I was assigned took us to Chili's to falsify our patrol hit paperwork and then told me he usually left halfway through the shift. I had a buddy meet me and left my uniform shirts with this hack.

                            Sometimes, the company does suck and jumping ship is the only reasonable way to deal with it. What you appear to be saying will shaft the officer who was desperate for a job and got on board in the first place.
                            An experience like this is certainly possible, but that's different from an established pattern. You can also compare job longevity to other indications of personal instability, such as frequent changes of address, attending numerous colleges without achieving much progress, etc. (When the applicant lists colleges attended without a degree, you should always ask how many credits he's earned. Four colleges attended with only 24 credits earned should raise a red flag that, at the very least, deserves some followup questions, such as "What's been the major obstacle to your earning your degree?". You might get answers that are very similar to those regarding previous employers: "That college was really lousy. Rotten teachers, crummy textbooks"...etc.)

                            Our main problem in interviewing applicants is this: If we pay attention to the application, we will see things that bother us, but for some reason we are reluctant to ask questions that are pointed and penetrating enough to get to the bottom of them. As astounding as it might be, interviewers are often more concerned with making a good impression on the applicant (!!), or impressing the applicant that this is a wonderful feel-good company to work for, than they are with conducting a genuine fact-finding interview. Oddly enough, "gushy" or "mushy" or "soft" interviews convey exactly the opposite impression - i.e., that this is a company that will take anybody. The Marines learned that this is the wrong approach. As (I believe) Groucho Marx said once, "I wouldn't belong to a club that would have me for a member". Believe it or not, when you hire people "too easily", they come in with exactly the same feeling, rather than a sense of pride that they have been chosen by a tough selection process.

                            When you interview applicants, you're not looking for a buddy. You're looking for a top-quality employee. Unfortunately, too many interviewers are looking for buddies and they can't bear to make the applicant "uncomfortable".

                            Something else. The hiring process tells new employees a great deal about the company itself. Usually, it is the first contact that they have with the company and they might know very little about it otherwise. THE HIRING PROCESS TELLS THEM SOMETHING ABOUT THE COMPANY. When the hiring process impresses a new employee that "anything goes", that the company has no standards, that glaring inconsistencies are ignored, that it's easy to lie your way through an interview, etc., that is his FIRST IMPRESSION of your company and he carries that impression with him into the job itself. You never get a second chance to make a first impression. The first impression your applicant should get is that your company is competent, and that starts with a competent hiring process. And believe me, they know the difference between one that's competent and one that's not.
                            Last edited by SecTrainer; 01-06-2011, 05:54 PM.
                            "Every betrayal begins with trust." - Brian Jacques

                            "I can't predict the future, but I know that it'll be very weird." - Anonymous

                            "There is nothing new under the sun." - Ecclesiastes 1:9

                            "History, with all its volumes vast, hath but one page." - Lord Byron

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              SecTrainer, thanks for your excellent contributions to this topic. I have found everything that you have said to be dead-on. The phrase "hire tough...manage easy" is simple yet profound.

                              I think that the other factor that needs to be considered is that sometimes the hiring manager is desperate to fill a position, and as a result, either consciously or unconsciously chooses to ignore the candidate's defects. In almost every "bad hire" that I have made in the past, I can look back to the original interview process and see warning signs that I chose to ignore because I was so anxious to get someone to fill the job.

                              When I first became a manager, I had tendencies to want to "take in strays" and attempt to rehabilitate marginal employees. I eventually learned that my success rate at doing this was next to zero, and I wasn't doing anyone, including the marginal employee, any favors.
                              Michael A. Silva
                              Silva Consultants

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