Why Do You Keep Hiring Poor Candidates? (Leadership 101)

poor culture fitSo you made a bad hire. Lesson learned. Eventually it happens to everyone.

But why haven’t you moved them on yet? Why are they still hanging around and leeching the morale from your team when you know good and well that they just aren’t going to fit?

Every day that you keep a “poor fit” employee, you make the decision to hire them all over again.

I’ll explain. See, when you hire someone and put that money into them, that’s what economics nerds like to call “sunk cost.” In a nutshell, the cost of the original choice has already been incurred, so don’t let that impact your decisions going forward.

When you keep someone on the payroll when you plainly know that 1) they’re not a culture fit and 2) it isn’t ever going to work out, you are saying every day, “I would hire them again.” Because you pretty much are. Not making the call to move them along is the same thing as asking them to come back over and over again.

They deserve the courtesy of the truth. You deserve a person on your team who will knock it out of the park. And your team members deserve someone who will contribute to the group, not drag it down. It’s time for some hands-on internal talent management.

Make the decision today. Stop rehiring that poor fit over and over again and let them find a place that truly does fit them. It may not be easy or fun, but it’s what a leader has to do sometimes.

Other posts in the Leadership 101 series:

3 thoughts on “Why Do You Keep Hiring Poor Candidates? (Leadership 101)

  1. Kristina

    Well said Ben! If that doesn’t fire everyone up and motivate them to clean up their organization nothing will :)

  2. Josh Tolan

    Great post and interesting way to phrase a common problem. If you don't let go of employees who are clearly a bad match for your company, you really are saying you would hire them all over again if they showed up in your video interview. Instead, let the employee find a company that fits their skills and working style, and find yourself a candidate who is actually excited to show up to work everyday.

  3. Pingback: This Week on the #HR Blogger Network: @HRfishbowl @WomenofHR and @BenEubanks

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