Recruiting for values…????

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One of the truisms I hear a lot at the moment is about the importance of recruiting for values – be that in the NHS, post Francis inquiry, or even a leading men’s fashion shop in Cambridge that always fields a brilliant team of staff runners in the annual Chariots of Fire race! We agree with that focus, as per the 5th level in our values model: integrating desired behaviours into the choices about who is hired, let go, disciplined, rewarded.

We see how many organisations,who are now aware, recruit for aptitude and tend to fire for attitude – this is a huge motivator for getting selection right. However, we do note, there tends to be a bit less interest amongst senior leaders to develop the trust and systems for honest feedback – feedback that is at the heart of work to get the most important thing right: leaders themselves modelling the desired behaviours (level 4 in our framework).

For example, I do wonder how the NHS would be different if those at the top did model a passionate commitment to safety and compassion – and not just financial balance targets (which, by the way I think are important – the 4 hour trolley wait standard has served people I have been attending well, during my A&E visits over the last couple of years…and overspending is never a good idea).

Maybe the reason leaders in many industries like the focus on level 5 is it is about ‘them’, ‘the others’.  Level 4 and Level 5 are a winning combination….but if I could only have one it would be 4, not 5.  Like curiosity, if you get the level 4 going then rest falls into place.

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