Water Well Journal

September 2015

Water Well Journal

Issue link: https://read.dmtmag.com/i/557876

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Page 7 of 71

Editor's NOTE W hen talking to someone recently about his company, I was blown away by his description of his hiring process. "At the first interview, I don't talk about hard skills. It's just about their personality, the characteristics we need them to have, and our company values." Excuse me? No skills are discussed? "I can teach skills, but I can't teach someone to fit into our company culture," he replied to my shocked face. Wow, that is progressive. It also works. The person I talked to is the owner of a fast growing tech company. It works because at the end of the day, your company's success is about its peo- ple. Your firm may be skilled at installing water well systems, but chances are your competitors can do that too. What will separate you is people—having colleagues who share your vision, work extra hard because they do so, and are able to have that come through when interacting with customers. Good people come with a good culture. So when you describe your company's culture, is it one you're happy with? Are you proud to work in it? A culture comes from more than providing the company mission statement the day a new-hire starts. It is having company values, sharing them, and making sure people work by them. It also comes with monitoring. A culture is a living thing; it can change. But if you work to maintain the positive one you've created and hired for, you'll retain those employees because they want to be a part of it. The person I talked to has nine characteristics he wants in his employees. He spends the first interview looking for those in the job candidate. He then has the candidate chat with a few other staff members and they look for those traits as well. When the interview is over, he and his staff members grade the candidate. They give an A, B, or F for each characteristic. If the candidate gets a lot of A's and B's, there's a second interview. That's when skills are finally discussed. So why doesn't he give C's and D's? Well, do you want to work with average or below average people? He wants people who are excellent or good. If they're not, they fail. Hiring like-valued people who understand and want to be in his company's cul- ture has enabled his firm to flourish. His plan seems radical—but if you stop and think about it for just a minute, it also seems pretty simple. Perhaps that's because it is. So what culture do you want for your company? Do you have A's and B's work- ing hard to make that happen? If not, don't be surprised when results are C's and D's. Thad Plumley is the editor of WWJ and director of information products at the National Ground Water Association. He can be reached at tplumley@ngwa.org and on Twitter @WaterWellJournl. WORKING IN THE RIGHT CULTURE The Water Well Journal (ISSN #0043-1443) is published monthly by the National Ground Water Association, 601 Dempsey Rd., Westerville, OH 43081. Printed and mailed at Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, and additional mailing offices. Postal acceptance: Periodical (requester subscription circulation) postage paid at Westerville, Ohio, and at additional mailing offices. Postmaster: Send address changes to Water Well Journal, 601 Dempsey Rd., Westerville, OH 43081. Canada Post/ Publications Mail Agreement #40739533. Return address: 4960-2 Walker Rd., Windsor, ON N9A 6J3. Advancing the expertise of groundwater professionals and furthering groundwater awareness. Chief Executive Officer Kevin McCray, CAE kmccray@ngwa.org NGWA President Richard Thron, MGWC Director of Information Products/Editor Thad Plumley tplumley@ngwa.org Water Well Journal Editorial Review Board Art Becker, MGWC, CPG; Tom Christopherson; Dan Milan; Roger Renner, MGWC; John Schnieders, Ph.D., and Robert Sterrett, Ph.D. Senior Editor Mike Price mprice@ngwa.org Copyeditor Wayne Beatty wbeatty@ngwa.org Production and Design Janelle McClary jmcclary@ngwa.org Advertising Wanda Bloch wbloch@ngwa.org Vickie Crosby vcrosby@ngwa.org Shelby Fleck sfleck@ngwa.org Circulation Coor dinator Carol Clark cclark@ngwa.org Contributing Writers Ed Butts, PE, CPI; Donald W. Gregory; William J. Lynott; Julie Hansen; Christine Reimer; Al Rickard, CAE; Ron Slee; Lana Straub; Jennifer Strawn; and Alexandra Walsh Editorial, Advertising, & Publishing Offices 601 Dempsey Rd., Westerville, OH 43081 (800) 551-7379 Fax: (614) 898-7786 Selected content from Water Well Journal is indexed on Ground Water On-Line™ at www.NGWA.org/gwonline © Copyright 2015 by the National Ground Water Association. All rights reserved. An APEX award winner 13 consecutive years with 27 total awards, most in the groundwater industry. waterwelljournal.com 6 September 2015 WWJ

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