Rapport Advantage

Five Secrets To Successful Hiring – No.5

Your company has a new position and you need to fill it fast. What do you do?
Should you just go out and grab the first interested person? Maybe you should do what you see happening a lot: companies taking new talent straight out of college?
No. None of those.
In these situations, you must remain calm and if you want to be successful in the long run:

Trust. The. Process.

We have all seen situations in Human Resources where we are willing to skip a step if we find someone who we think is going to be a good fit for the role.
After looking at a resume and having a small chat, we want to pull the trigger before someone else scoops them. This is the situation when we fail each time.

You need to trust the process to have good long-term results.

Guessing can go either way. But, it probably won’t.

When I first started my company, I used to guess just like a lot of people do. But whenever you guess that someone will be a good fit, chances are you will make a mistake. That used to happen to me as I didn’t have processes in place.
Before starting my medical billing company I was mostly in the teaching business. So, I didn’t have any process for comparing. Also, as a High I personality, I am not a process-driven person.

What I used to do is I would hire people who were like me. Fun, making everyone laugh, had a talent for telling stories, charismatic, etc. While this is a great tactic for meeting new friends or having a conversation, it’s a terrible idea when hiring people for different roles.

I wanted to build a business that required people who are detail-oriented, who are going to build claims daily and remotely. High Is are impulsive, have the shiny-object syndrome, and just want to have fun. So having someone like me in a position that requires you to be concentrated and detail-oriented is a recipe for a disaster.

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Don’t cheat

It took me a couple of years to set processes in place. It was not an easy job and it took a lot of time and energy both from me and my team. But, I am putting out what I have learned. 

 There are 5 steps for hiring and retaining people: 

  1. Alignment of core values
  2. Job benchmarking
  3. Put people in the role before they get the role
  4. Ask the right questions
  5. Trust the process

This process is similar to building a house: you need a firm foundation on which you will build the rest of the structure.
One of the most important things is to not cheat, not skip steps. Or: trust the process.

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Do it all the way through and you will get better candidates. I guarantee that.
You will spend less time re-hiring people, you won’t need to waste that much energy and money on training people or getting certificates for them, your HR will not waste time…

If you don’t put the process in place you can expect to be going through resumes and interviews, guessing which candidate is the best, training them, making arrangements on the team due to the newcomer, getting licenses, and different requirements for them, putting in a lot of energy… And then seeing them walk out the door after a few weeks, leaving you to go through the whole process once again.

Do you want to hire and keep good people?
Trust the process.

Five Secrets To Successful Hiring – No.2

Full-time, part-time, remote, freelance… any kind of job arrangement is now available. And everyone wants to hire good people, but there are burning questions: how to find good people and how to keep them? 

We have gone through step one: alignment of core values and you can find it HERE

 Now that you have that out of the way, it’s time for step two in the hiring process. These are my secrets of employing people in my company Solor where we have 92 percent retention. What do we do when we figure out a new person is aligned with our core values?

Job benchmarking foundation

To put it in simpler terms: this is a process of matching a person to a role based upon their Emotional Intelligence. The goal here is to have a person get the energy from a role instead of losing energy.
Remember: when an employee is losing energy from a job role, the only possible outcome is the creation of a toxic, gossipy, passive-aggressive atmosphere. And who wants that?!

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Use the available tools

To determine whether someone is good for the role you need, there are plenty of tools out there. I use DISC assessment and recommend it as it has proven to me times and times again that the results I’m getting are right on the spot.
DISC divides people into 4 different categories, ensuring that if I follow it and match it with the role that’s “empty”, a new employee will feel comfortable in a new role.

Let’s put things into perspective

If a person applying for a job is a D/I, they are very driven and outgoing. Let’s say you want to put that person into the sales department where they have to make a phone call every week, maybe not even to make a sale but to create a relationship with a customer. You want them to be interested in the person on the other side of the line.
Your new D/I employee will not be comfortable with that. What drives them is commission, quick turnaround, fast transaction. And they will not get a single thing from forming a relationship with a customer. They lose, and you lose. No sales, and no relationship.
Remember that we are not all wired the same. We are not all driven by the same things. Some people what to climb the corporate ladder, while others want to stay where they are and create long-term relationships with their clients. Some want money, others want connections.

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How to connect the right person with the right role and why do we use DISC

When looking for a new team member, you need to find a tool that is going to work for you. You need to know how will the people be triggered by a role, and how will they communicate in a role. What are the things that will cause a conflict in your organization?
We use the DISC method in my company because we are working remotely. Many companies have switched to this kind of arrangement due to the pandemic so I’m sure DISC can help you organize your company as well.

What is important when you work remotely is to have people who are task-oriented. High D and C will be great because they will be more independently capable than I and S styles. I don’t need to micromanage D’s and C’s because I know they will make the job done, even though they will do it a little bit differently than how I would have done it.

Put the tool to use for proper job benchmarking

I usually have a manager or someone who is high-performing in a certain role already to do a DISC assessment with people because he/she will know what they need for a specific role. They also go through an assessment together. They compare what is written in an assessment to what a manager needs a person to do in order to determine where exactly is a new employee on a DISC circle.

Why? You need to know if a High C will struggle to get into an I role, or a High S in a D role. That will allow you to coach your people better, to understand them before they are even hired to determine if this person is going to need a lot of coaching or will they feel like a role is made for them.

Our retention is so high (92 percent) because we do job benchmarking and we connect the right people to the right roles.

Hiring is subjective. It’s super difficult to find objective means to hire someone. Some people are better in a resume, some are better in an interview than others. That’s what makes us all unique!

But if you use the tools available, you get more objective data points.

Watch out for this

Tools available out there to determine the right role for a good employee are vast. However, always consult with your labor attorney. You want to make sure that whatever tool you use, it’s not causing an impact it shouldn’t have. You cannot discriminate against one body of people (race, ethnicity, sexuality….). This is a tool you don’t want to use.
This is why I recommend DISC, as it is non-discriminatory.

Whatever tool you use, keep in mind that you want people to gain energy from their role because if they are losing it, that will create a toxic workplace, gossipy, passive-aggressive atmosphere.
Even in this case, people can stay for a long time but probably won’t.

Keep your workplace energy-driven and keep it up for many years to come.

How to survive the Holidays with the family?

The Holidays are a time of joy. Family, friends, and fun! However, they’re also a stressful time of year: cooking, cleaning, hosting, and communicating with people that we infrequently see.  Not to mention the little ones running around. All the noise, noise, NOISE!! If you are wondering how to maintain sanity, this is a guide for you.

What is now before us is a madhouse. We’ll be traveling (which is stressful enough in this day and age), we’ll be answering questions from people we haven’t seen in six months or a year, and deal with the pressure of making sure everyone is on time, food is delicious and decorations are amazing. It. Is. A. Lot. The good news is there is a way to have a happy and healthy holiday season.

DISC and its personality styles can play a key role while we find our way through all the stressful activities that are waiting just around the corner. Anticipating our behavior and the behavior of others will do wonders.

Every family gathering has a person that is….

Try to find your family members or friends in these descriptions so you can prepare yourself. The fact is: if you are invited to join a festive dinner or are hosting family and friends, you will experience a little bit of each personality style. Here is the breakdown of what you can expect from who.

Involved, wants to win at every game, screams at the TV while watching a game, cuts the turkey, wants to say a blessing before the meal

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These kinds of people are a high D. Outgoing and task-oriented people who just want to be involved at everything. Most importantly, they want to be the best at everything. Ready to take the charge, even if they are not the host. You can also easily recognize them by the subjects they want to talk about. Their career will be often the topic they choose, or just success in general (“Look at this picture here, this is the fish that I caught!”)
High D will be the happiest if they can take the charge and win at every game that is taking place. However, if they have to listen to someone for a long time go on and on about their problems, expect a frown. You should approach them with a long story if you want help with fixing the issue, but don’t expect them to listen to a long story that is just a narrative. They just can’t take it. Also, they will be the happiest when it’s all done and they can go back to their tasks and their grind.
While you’re still at the gathering, try to find something that will make their creative juices flowing and you’ll see a very happy D!

Talking to EVERYONE, making jokes, playing music, creating fun where there seems to be none

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High I in your family circle will always do this. Their goal is for everyone to have fun and enjoy themselves. Not a surprise as they are outgoing and people-oriented. If the dinner doesn’t seem that fun, not to worry: they are not just the life of the party, they ARE the party.
Perfect holiday celebration for a high I is a situation in which they can talk to everyone and where they can be surrounded by people. That also means that if the ongoing pandemic stops them from meeting family, they will really be affected. Isolation is something they dread so if you have a high I in your family, let them enjoy the moment. Letting them roam around the house and create conversations with all the guests will make their day and their holidays special.

Hugh everyone, is the sweetest person in the room, helps with the dinner and everything else a host might need

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There is no one that puts the family in the focus as a High S. Talking about family, listening to stories from previous gatherings, and generally enjoying the company of loved ones is something they hold dear to their heart. As people-oriented but reserved folks, don’t expect them to talk too much. But do expect them to help you with the dinner, setting up the table, taking care of the children, or anything else that you might need. Don’t be afraid, it’s not a problem for them as they want to be helpful.
One thing to make sure that a high S is not unhappy with a holiday gathering is to try and avoid conflict. If one arises, expect them to leave the room as they would do anything to remove themselves from a situation that is getting heated.

Comes to the gathering early, constantly reminds everyone about the time and schedule, loves traditional recipes

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A high C person loves tasks, agendas, schedules. That’s why they expect everyone to follow an agreed plan even during holidays. If someone decides to pull a surprise for everyone or venture into spontaneous activity, you can expect a high C to be perplexed. They just need time to process things and they will need to know why are we moving away from a schedule.
What will make these family members happy besides sticking to an agenda is the lack of anarchy. Kids running around and screaming while the adults are making their own noise will be hard for them to deal with. On top of that, they are reserved so don’t expect them to talk too much by themselves. However, feel free to ask questions.

How to survive all the personalities in one room?

What you can do is an activity I do in my workshops. You can divide the family into outgoing reserved people, or task-oriented and people-oriented. Group similar personalities together so they can share activities. Have a conversation that is aligned with personalities. Find out why people do what they do or say what they say. Or don’t say what they don’t so you can get more clarity in your relationship and have an enjoyable holiday for everyone. Not just this year, but in all the years that lie ahead of us.

Happy Thanksgiving!

How To Follow a Legend?

Having to give any kind of speech in front of other people can be a very stressful task. It can be any speech from a big presentation that has to end up in getting a sale, through talking to your boss about your raise, all the way to giving a presentation of your idea or work in front of a team. But what happens when a person or persons coming before you are either really famous or just knock it out of the park? How can you handle that in terms of your stress and your preparation?

This is a situation that can happen to anyone and it can cause nervousness to any of us. It just recently happened to me even though I have been giving speeches for more than twenty years.
I have been invited to speak in an organization and everyone in the organization received an e-mail that said: “Our meeting this month is in person and our focus is going to be on the Rapport Advantage: Dynamically transforming the way you communicate with Alex Swire-Clark. We had an outstanding speaker in general Colin Powell, chairman retired last month, and our presenter this month will deliver!


Colin Powell? What?!
Thinking that I will be speaking to a group who just heard general Powell speak while having all the respect in the world for him, is really a hard act to follow.
How to do this?

I see this as an opportunity to build upon what’s happened rather than go into panic mode. I see this as an opportunity to have fun with it and embrace it and live up to that challenge. Of course, I will be nervous, I am nervous every time I go in front of an audience but it is because I want to deliver good content to them and make sure that the audience is getting value from my time with them.
What can you do before you get on the stage, what do you do in those moments before?

  1. Breathe.
    Nice, big deep breaths before you get on that stage.
  2. Roleplay all the possible situations.
    Do you know your numbers inside and out? Do you know your speech inside and out? Can you ad-lib if necessary? Are you prepared for questions in the middle of your presentation, can you handle that? Roleplay those situations, spend a lot of time in the pre-work and that makes the actual on-stage time much simpler for you.
  3. Just go with it and BE YOU.
    From a DISC world, I am a High I so I have strong improvisational skills, I am not rigid so not a lot bothers me. I could roll with the flow since that’s the way I am wired. For someone else that might not be the case and maybe you will have to adapt a bit more. However, do not try to be like anybody else.
    Be you, use your voice. Do what you do in the way that you do it and that’s going to give you authenticity and you will not have so much pressure. If I tried to act like someone else does on the stage, I will not be genuine and on top of that I will have to remember content, mannerisms, techniques and I will enhance the chances of freezing up.

Remember, if you are delivering content, you have to be you through it. If you are delivering something that is data-driven, that doesn’t mean you can not liven it up, add your personality to it and appropriate humor.
Make sure you hit these three goals:

This will give you a sense of confidence and satisfaction that you know you’ll do a great job (of course, if you put in the time and the work before speaking).

Don’t worry, trust in your pre-work, be authentic to who you are and do your thing. Who speaks before you, in that case, shouldn’t matter. You got this!

Why Is Your Passion Seen As Anger?

Each of the four personality styles (D, I, S and C) has it’s strengths and blind spots. Knowing what personality style you are will then allow you to get familiar with the strengths that you are bringing to the table. Also, you will then know what are the blind spots that you have so that you can avoid issues in communication, and you can also surround yourself with those who can help you compliment the style that you have.

If you are still not sure what personality style you are, you can find it out HERE. It is a DISC Assessment that I have prepared for you and that will in only 25 questions give an answer to why you react in a way you do and open the doors of communication you didn’t even know is possible.

A big number of people who after DISC Assessment fall into High D category are CEOs, or Executive Vice Presidents, or any other leader in an organization. The reason behind this is that a High D personality style does not take No for an answer. They see climbing the corporate ladder as a challenge and they don’t stop until they get to the top.

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Here are four major strengths that a High D possesses:

Result orientated – High D is all about getting the objective met, regardless of what is it going to take. Excuses are not something that they are interested in, rather results that will get them to that objective.

Strategic, forward-looking, innovative – the brain of a High D is always thinking how they can implement something new and better in an organization and it is always moving on to the next big idea. They come up with innovative ideas that have never been done before as they are always thinking outside of the box.

Direct communicators and challenge oriented – when a High D want to present something to you, they will do so in a direct manner. It will be so straightforward that they will usually not give any additional information or necessary words. Your task will be clear and laid out in front of you.

Making quick decisions and initiating activity – a High D is all about execution. They are doers by nature, and they try to pack up as much as possible in a single working day. They have the urge to constantly move so they will not sit around but take the decision on what the next step should be. Sometimes this decision will be based on facts, and sometimes it will be based on a High D following their gut feeling. Either way, the decision will be made.

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Now that we know the great sides of a High D, we need to look at the things that they are not aware of and that can be perceived in a negative manner:

Setting standards too high – most of the time, a High D will be sure that something can be done in a smaller amount of time than it actually takes to get it done. As a High D, the standards that you set are too high for most people and if you are not aware of this, you can wear your staff out.

Changing course more frequently than it’s necessary – High D likes the change, and they have to be moving all the time, so they will bring many changes in an organization. While changes for better are always good, putting out too many incentives and new objectives will be hard for people to track. It is important to slow down and let people know what exactly are you doing and why when you want to make a change.

Lacking tact and diplomacy – what a High D will often forget since they are always busy, is that other people need time to process information. High D’s brain is always buzzing, and they sometimes forget to tell all the information, since they are following what’s going on in their head. If you are guilty of this, try giving out all the information to your employees, and see how they can achieve much more with you as their leader.

Appearing angry when they believe they are being passionate – as an innovative person, a High D is excited to speak about their new idea. The downside of this is that they get very involved when speaking, so others can see that as anger or frustration. A good way around this sometimes-unpleasant situation is to take use of other personality style. A High D who wants to be perceived in a correct way can hire an administrative assistant who is a High S. What they are going to get by that is to have a human filter for message they are trying to convey. This person will filter the message and smooth things over so the communication in an organization will be much more effective.

You can learn how different personality styles can work together to avoid blind spots on my YouTube channel and my weekly Podcast. Remember that the first step to thriving in your workplace or at home is self-awareness. Find out what style is yours and what excellent qualities you bring to the table. Take the step today HERE.

Concise Adult Version

This 6-page report provides essential feedback with an accurate measurement of your personality blend. Your report will include the following:

  • Words that describe you
  • Your strengths
  • Keys to Excellence
  • Your value on a team
  • Your DISC personality graphs