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The Selection Process

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Now that you have all of the people who have passed through all three interviews, you can now begin the selection process. Simply put the people with the highest scores in the available shifts that match their schedule. If the entire system is done properly, you should end up with more final applicants than available shifts. We keep those people “on call” for the next semester, which means if we were to lose someone and a shift becomes available, then we will call those people and offer them the position. They don’t have to go through the process all over, they just come right in and train. This is a useful tool to have when you only hire three times a year.

General Interviewing Tips

The interview should be structured so that specific information can be obtained from the prospect in the most efficient and accurate way.

  • Know in advance the key areas that qualify an individual for the position in question. Match questions with the areas and, if doing a team interview, decide who will focus on which area.
  • Choose the location where interviews will be conducted and ensure that it is available, clean and free from interruption.
  • Start out simple; begin with easy to ask, easy to answer questions. This helps put the prospect at ease and allows you to get in interview stride. Be cautious of time — your interview should be as relaxed as possible, but don’t wander off and waste time.
  • Ask questions 20 percent of the time or less. You are attempting to find out information about the prospect, so they should be doing eighty percent or more of the talking.
  • Your questions will be mostly probing, information gathering and investigating. However, many times to truly understand the individual you may have to employ empathetic listening or paraphrasing, in order to show the individual your sincere interest and intent to understand.
  • In order to make the interview more personable and unique, use the individuals name often and always make direct eye contact.
  • Interpret and translate body language. Many times a prospect will attempt to tell you what they think you want to hear, this is why it is important to translate their body language in order to qualify the verbal answers. Make use of empathetic skills of translation — paraphrase their body language back to them as well.
  • Some interviewers write notes during the interview and some do not. Do not be afraid to write in an abbreviated style, but remember your job is to listen and gather information. Write if you like but continue to actively listen. If you choose to write information during the interview, make sure you do it in full view of the prospect. If not, many candidates will become nervous simply because of the writing.
  • Keep it simple. Ask only one question at a time. Use follow-up questions and paraphrasing.

The Importance of a Great Interview Process

  • Money. Remember it costs GHF at least $500 to hire and train each new employee. Invest wisely.
  • Future Staff. We need the best people to work with. Members need consistency — they stay for our staff.
  • Learned Organization. When we hire well it increases staff confidence in us.
  • The GHFC Family. Applicants should have the same experience we have gotten.
  • Perception is Reality. This is how applicants view our organization.  Interviews are a uniting factor, and set the tone for what GHF expects from them.
  • Practice. We can use this in the future. It builds a desired management skill.

Common Mistakes

  • Interviews should be based on our core values and the GHF hiring systems.  Use the interview check sheets.
  • 75 percent of employees we lose are based on our hiring mistakes: Trust your judgments/instincts, and leave no unaddressed questions.
  • Do not over-weight referrals. Look at actual interview performance, but remember that our best staff are referred by our best staff.
  • Never assume that others will see the problem. If you pass them, assume that person will be working for us. If you are not confident, do not pass them.
  • Be very picky —we are looking for the top 1 percent.
  • Interviewers need to communicate between interviews. Talk about applicants and decide as a group who we will actually hire. Only accept the best.
  • Don’t come unprepared. Read the applications and use them as tools. Are they a “no” before they get there? Have your materials and supplies ready.
  • Don’t be too sensitive about their feelings. Too often we let people get the benefit of the doubt.
  • Don’t rush the process. Take your time.
  • Shawn Stewart is the Operations Manager at Gainesville Health and Fitness Center. Contact him at shawns@ghfc.com

Rachel Zabonick-Chonko

Rachel Zabonick-Chonko is the editor-in-chief of Club Solutions Magazine. She can be reached at rachel@peakemedia.com.

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