I try hard not to overanalyze things, though sometimes I fail. What can I say, I enjoy not being perfect. Life is much easier that way. So when an important or difficult decision presents itself, I try to look at it in a simplistic way and ask myself what’s most important in making the decision.
As an example, if you were to hire someone for a job, you would review their resume or application, look for the type of experience that fits the position you’re trying to fill and ask specific questions about their accomplishments. After that, you may ask for references or check with their previous employers to see if what they said they did matches up with what they actually accomplished. When that was done, you might even run a background check on them, check their Facebook page, see if they have a twitter account or check their Linkedin profile. In short, you would do your due diligence to make sure you were hiring the best candidate based on their experience, actual accomplishments and ethics.
Pretty simple, right? I think most of us would agree on those points.
So now lets throw a presidential election into the mix. This country must decide who they want leading their company for a specific period of time or elected term of office. While I understand the power of this position has limits based on a variety of factors, it’s still significant in terms of power, perception, attitude and company morale. So I would think, simplistically speaking, we would, at the very least, adopt the same kind of hiring process that I mentioned earlier.
But here’s where things get fuzzy. We have a tendency to become distracted or misdirected by the way things are presented to us rather than by the truth of what’s presented. We have individual agendas, things that are in our own individual best interests rather than the well-being of the company. We become infatuated by style, wealth, promises, rhetoric and really good comedic lines at rallies and debates. We forget about the simple questions like, what have you accomplished or what real experience do you have for this position? Instead of looking into the truth of what’s being said or promised, we just accept it as gospel because someone was smart enough to strike a nerve that resonates. If they say they can do it, even though they have no experience or track record on getting something like this done, that seems to be good enough.
We seem to elect and gravitate toward showmen these days, snake oil salesmen who will promise you truth in a bottle of vinegar. And we drink it down with a smile on our faces. Style without an ounce of substance to back up their claims. Make no mistake, both parties have these salesmen/saleswomen and we, as voters, are equal opportunity offenders of this hiring process.
So we’ll go through this ridiculously long and incredibly expensive process only to ignore those few qualified candidates who have real accomplishments on their resumes and have played the game with as much honesty and integrity as is possible. Unfortunately, celebrities or last names will eventually win out and once again we will be left with a house filled with lots of style but not an ounce of substance.
Makes you wonder how long it will take before the continued shortcomings in our hiring process will eventually force our company out of business.
Style or substance? Which will you support?