August 9, 2020

Richardson Column in The Free Lance-Star

College of Business Dean Lynne Richardson’s weekly column in The Free Lance-Star discusses the dynamic of hiring for optics. Read HIRING FOR OPTICS.

College of Business Dean Lynne Richardson

College of Business Dean Lynne Richardson

RICHARDSON: Hiring for optics

I WAS talking with someone recruiting for a newly created position with fairly structured duties. The organization chose to do an internal search, wanting to promote from within.

The message from the supervisor of the person I was talking to is that he needs to hire a woman. It wasn’t that he needs to hire a woman if she’s the best qualified for the position, it was that he needs to hire a woman.

OK, so I’m a woman. And I can tell you that I never have wanted to be hired because I am a woman.

So let’s unpack this. When we hire people into positions in our organizations, in my opinion, we should first and foremost hire the people who are the best qualified to do the work required. These hires are generally people who have done similar work or have transferable skills to ensure they can successfully perform the tasks assigned.

Of course, in order to select the best fit for our position, we must create as diverse a pool of candidates as possible. This may be more difficult for internal hires, but less problematic for external hires. If we cast a wide net, we’re likely to have a robust group of candidates to select from.

If we don’t hire the most prepared or best qualified candidate, we are most likely going to hurt the organization. Or, as a supervisor, we are either going to be micromanaging or dealing with the results of poor performance. Neither works for me, for either the supervisor or the organization. Read more.