How to Recruit a Great Manager Part 2: All Aboard!

Recruiting a manager is extra work crammed into your already bursting schedule. It’s also work you do infrequently (we hope!), meaning you may get rusty between cycles. Most people have great intentions when they start to recruit, but the process can be draining. When fatigue sets in, remind yourself of the goal.

Recruiting takes a few weeks, but a great hire will be with you for years. Don’t rush it. As with any new relationship, you want the honeymoon to last as long as possible – maybe forever. It is your job to find the right person first, and then set them up so that initial excitement lasts well into their tenure with the company. Next, we will delve into the on-boarding process, and describe what you can do in the first six weeks to set your new manager up for success.

All Aboard!

1. Seek Diversity: Develop a management team with a variety of perspectives. *See Part 3: Don’t Build a Stepford Management Team.
2. Ask Great Questions: This is your chance to find out whatever you want to know, so don’t let politeness win over clarity.
3. Hire Learners: Test your candidates’ abilities to incorporate feedback immediately. *See Part 3: Don’t Build a Stepford Management Team.
4. Trust Experience: Never, ever hire anyone without thoroughly checking references.

Learn from Someone Who Has Seen Your Candidate at Work

Once you have narrowed your choices to the top three candidates, don’t be shy about calling their references. Write down the top three things you love about this candidate and your top three concerns, and ask about those specific issues. Ask follow-up questions and request examples. The value of the reference checks will be proportionate to the quality of questions you ask. Also ask the references if there is anyone else they think you should talk to about the potential hire.

Tara Landes

Tara Landes is the President and Founder of Bellrock Benchmarking Inc., a Vancouver-based Management Consulting firm. If you want to learn more about how to convince your sales peoples to do these activities, visit

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