How Many Essential Skills Are You Demanding in a Job?

When I taught that one-day workshop in Sweden, one of the questions we discussed was the number of essential skills to list in a job analysis, and by extension, the job description. Too few essential skills, and you don’t differentiate your position from anyone else’s. Too many, and you over-constrain the role. Surely, there must …

Avoid Contributing to the “Global Epidemic” of Poor Job Fit

I read this article, “Poor Job Fit: A Growing Global Epidemic.” Julie Moreland, the author, says our hiring approaches neglects to account for an individual’s suitability for a potential job. … Research from Towers Watson shows that companies with high levels of employee engagement improved operating income by 19.2 percent, while those with low levels …

Fantastic Stories of Overqualified Employees

I’ve had a heavy speaking calendar this month. I knew I’d be home, so I accepted a number of local and close domestic speaking engagements. I’ve been surprised by some fantastic stories of managers and employees. First, there’s the well-meaning manager who wants a current tester to be “motivated” to do manual testing. “How do …

Change Adjectives to Abilities

I taught my “Hiring for Agile Teams” workshop at ADP today, and finally have words for something I’ve seen for a while. When I ask people to describe qualities, preferences, and non-technical skills, they say things like “easy-going” or “intuitive” or something else that describes behavior. Since I love behavior-description questions, you’d think this would …

Ask Why

So you didn’t get the promotion. Before you look for a new job, ask why. It’s possible you’re missing something critical for that role. Many years ago, I was working as a “senior member of the technical staff.” I was a tester, had coordinated beta tests, much of the testing work for the last couple …