What’s the culture?
This week on the show we invited Business Psychologist, Dr Tim Sparkes, to join us to discuss the definition of the, so often used word, talent. With his extensive experience of “improving candidate role-fit through the science of occupational psychology”, we were excited to learn more about the application of this form of science in recruitment.
Tim’s background of partnering with companies to deliver specialist assessment, development and talent management consultancy has seen help companies better understand their talent, potential and leadership on an individual, team and whole organisation basis. As he tells us, he uses “a variety of techniques and methods to make sure choosing the right person for the right job, past instinct and gut, ensure you have a more informed and evidence-based approach to deciding which person is the best person for the role”.
We open the show asking Tim to talk about what kind of culture a candidate is best suited to and he tells us his opening question for most businesses – “I will ask the recruiter or the Line Manager – what’s the culture?” – the response is often a combination of ‘collaboration’ and ‘can-do attitude’ references which is not actually the culture. He tells us his definition; “culture is a combination of the people in the organisation as well as the structure and processes in the organisation”. Furthermore, he tells us the importance of being able to describe your company culture, “being able to articulate this (culture) in your job spec is going to make a massive difference to your attraction”.
It’s about being more informed
Tim is very passionate about changing the traditional frames of reference when hiring as he tells us “if you look at a CV, you’ll read what an individual has achieved, not how they have achieved it”, for him “how they are going to work is so important” and “how you go about it (your work) is so much more important and it’s linked to tenure and engagement”. Furthermore, he comments that the current process of CV screening based on skills and experience alone is “necessary, but not sufficient criteria to meet a job demand”.
We also discuss the subject of failure, perhaps still a taboo point of discussion at interview stage we venture? – Tim counters that “if you’re focusing on only the success factors, you’re only getting half the equation”. This links to the subject of derailers, which Tim describes as ” derailer is an aspect of us that can’t be compensated for by strengths” and a “derailer starts off as a strength, it’s when it becomes overused, it becomes a derailer”.
To close the show, Dr. Tim’s advice to businesses, recruiters (in-house or agency) is that “to get the best out of a person, as opposed to a resource, you need to understand that person”, because “appreciating the person, can be both beneficial to the person and the organisation”.
If that wasn’t enough, you’ll hear Dr. Tim talk about:
- Assessing strengths and derailers
- Understanding your work preferences and non-preferences
- RIP competency-based interview questions
- Quasi-random sampling
- HR and the use of data
- How proper dialogue can retain your top talent