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How Do You Find Four-Leaf Clover Employees?

March 19, 2021

Heather Nezich, courtesy of SBAM Approved Partner ASE

“A great employee is like a four-leaf clover, hard to find and lucky to have.” We all want to have four-leaf clover employees, but how do we find them?  Are they found by luck or is there a technique?

While some of it is luck and timing, there are ways to identify those rare, four-leaf clover employees:

  1. Seek referrals. Referrals are often the top resource for finding the best candidates.  Do you have a past employee or a past colleague that stood out as a four-leaf clover?  Give them a call.  They might have a great referral for you. Some of the best sources of referral are your own team members and former colleagues.
  2. Give them a test project (paid). Standout employees create quality work.  A hiring project is an excellent way to discover if the candidate can hit deadlines, how they handle problems, how well they scope their work, etc.  Just make sure you pay them in order to remain compliant. This is one of the best ways to discover a stand-out candidate.  You’ll likely immediately notice the difference among your candidates.
  3. Look near and far for hidden talent, and don’t limit yourself with restrictive requirements. Some suggestions include:
    1. Promote from within.  Onboarding time is greatly reduced, and you’ll be working with a person who already knows the company and how it works and is embedded in the culture. In addition, you will be showing all employees that there is room for growth.
    2. Bring someone in from a parallel business, with the technical know-how and learning skills, rather than insisting on specific skills in a specific business.
    3. Do some succession planning. Consider recent college grads who can be groomed for higher level positions.
  4. Look beyond the normal social media channels – Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. According to SHRM, 70% of organizations leverage social media as a recruiting strategy. Go beyond the norm and consider places like reddit, quora, or blog sites to find hidden talent. One study showed that reddit users had a higher average IQ than user on most other media platforms…worth looking into.
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