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Thursday, March 15, 2012

Guest Blog - Hire for Goosebumps - by Roy Osing

On the outside chance you don't already know or haven't at least heard of this month's guest blogger, please allow me to introduce him: Roy Osing is the founder, president and chief executive officer of Brilliance for Business, an organization dedicated to providing practical and proven ways to improve both business and personal performance.

Roy is also a widely recognized blogger, speaker, seminar leader, business consultant, educator and personal coach, not to mention the author of Be Different or be dead. a must read if you are looking for competitive advantage.

The following is one of many of Roy's pearls of wisdom when it come to creating the customer experience:


Dazzle your Fans. Blow ‘em away. Leave them breathless. Mesmerise them; a key strategy to Distinguish your organization from the faceless competitive herd. SERVE them don’t SERVICE them. You SERVICE automobiles but you SERVE people.

THE most important way of achieving the Dazzle Dream is to recruit people that love human beings! People that have the instinctive desire to serve their fellow homo-sapiens. To take care of them. To satisfy them regardless of what they want. A person can’t be trained to love people; they are either borne with the nurturing attribute or they are not.

The real issue then becomes how to find these invaluable folks. How to discover people this natural desire to serve.

Here’s a rather simple but so effective way of separating the Human Lovers from the Fish (or the Grinners who have been through some type of Customer Service Training program).

First, ask the prospective employee this question: “Do you love human beings?”. They will realize that this a bit of a trick question but will not know where you are going with it. Fun as the interviewer to say the least. Most people will say “yes” in varying ways, ranging from the declaration “Absolutely” to the positive inference “Sure”. You need to dig deeper.

Next, pose this: “Tell me a story that will show me that you love your fellow humans”. The responses you get from this request will be of two types: One, “The Intellectualizer” or two, “The People Lover”. The Intelectualizer has figured out what you are up to and will conjure up a story that quite frankly will leave you COLD.

The natural-born People Lover, on the other hand will thrill you with a story that will leave you warm all over. Their story will paint a vivid picture of someone who cares about people and who is creative at finding ways to create unforgettable memories for them.

The People Lover will leave you with Goosebumps. Hire for Goosebumps and you will never go wrong. Do it. Your fans deserve them.



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  1. Hi Jim, interesting article, but I'd be concerned if this was being advocated for across the board recruitment activities.

    For example, I would not advocate someone who "loves and cares for people" as a prime candidate for HR, nor for a credit controller, auditor, nor any role where tough, sometimes brutal decisions need to be made. Rather, I want people in my organisation who have personality traits which display (in no particular order) decisiveness, sensitivity, behavioural skills, high level communication skills, tenacity, self-motivaton, and teamworking and independence in equal measures.

    My concern with the "people lovers" of the article relates to their ability to deliver those essential messages that people do not want to hear, eg: retrenchment, credit refusal, negative comments at audit, etc etc.

    If we were to substitute "People Lovers" with individuals who display high levels of interpersonal sensitivity combined with decisiveness and strong behavioural and communication skills, I think we'd not have too many disagreements from most of today's executives.

    Sorry if this post seems overly critical Jim, and hope you and your guest blogger, take it in the spirit intended.

  2. Ha-excellent - for all HR staff everywhere.


  3. Hi Mike.

    Thanks for your feedback and point taken! Not to put words in Roy's mouth, but I suspect he was thinking more about hiring customer facing staff when he wrote this. That said there is the arguement that those who serve those who serve should exemplify the great service behaviors, but I agree that there is also a need for those who can make the hard calls. Since no one person can be all things to all people, perhaps the answer lies in hiring a whole lot of 'people lovers' (especially on the coal face) and a few sensitive, yet direct and decisive 'gate keepers' to keep it real.

    What say you?

  4. I have to agree with Zephyr, above, but not just in favour of stern people, but in favour of *diversity*, in general. Let's have all the colours of the Myers-Briggs rainbow, the introverts as well as the extroverts.

    Also, I'm not sure I'd use this approach, even if I were hiring for extroversion. An interview is already a sort of performance--it hardly needs to be encouraged in extroverted people. They will already be showing me their best face. I need to know what that person looks like when the mask slips, so to speak. Don't tell me about a time you shone, tell me about a hard time, and how did you handle it?

    I guess I'm one of those non-people lovers, LOL. I ask the tough questions, make the tough decisions.

    1. I'm thinking we need to know how people react on both sides - rain and shine.

  5. Moving up in the world - guest bloggers indeed. Interesting to see how many hits your last one had.