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The Journal Gazette

Sunday, July 23, 2017 1:00 am

Maybe industry neophyte right fit

LISA GREEN | The Journal Gazette

A story from Bloomberg's news service on the front of today's Business section addresses the increased interest recruiters are seeing from companies who need help – with unemployment so low – filling certain jobs.

I had selected that story more than a week ago to publish and then talked Monday to two Fort Wayne recruiters about their experiences. I found it ironic Thursday when I received a Talent Economy email newsletter with a lead story on hiring approaches. “With Some Hires, Less Industry Experience is More,” the story headline said.

Some firms, according to the article by Kate Rockwood, are experimenting with hiring people without industry experience. The idea is that they can better train and mold them in the specific skills the company most values. 

The article quotes one software company executive who said he has had success using a hiring strategy that favors “fit and enthusiasm over experience.”

I wonder whether more executives and managers with hiring responsibilities might find value in that approach – particularly if it's hard to find workers trained in their industry who are interested in joining their team. Obviously it would depend on the type of job, but I can understand hiring with consideration to how well someone may adapt to some of even the so-called soft skills – such as communication – that can make an organization run more smoothly. Sometimes people with little background in an area can also identify ways to streamline processes because they're not so set on “this is the way we've always done it.” 

The emerging open-mindedness about experience is a response to the talent gap many hiring managers face, the article said.

It's an interesting concept certainly.

New releases

The number of leadership books continues to grow with new releases.

Widely respected executive coach Lolly Daskal released her latest book, “The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness,” after Memorial Day.

The book explores how some leaders who have risen based on exceptional skills falter when “shadow sides” of strengths emerge. For example, the rebel driven by confidence becomes an impostor plagued by self doubt or the explorer fueled by intuition becomes the exploiter, a master of manipulation.

Daskal, founder and CEO of Lead From Within, is a blogger and writer whose articles have appeared in publications including Harvard Business Review, Psychology Today and Inc.com.

William E. Schneider released “Lead Right For Your Company's Type” this month. The book's subtitle is “How to Connect Your Culture With Your Customer Promise.”

Many companies try to use the latest management fad to address challenges but are treating the symptoms while ignoring the true problem. Success starts with knowing the kind of business you're really in, and most businesses fall into one of four categories, the book suggests. Those categories are customized, such as an ad agency; predictable and dependable, such as a utility company; benevolent, such as an educational institution; and best in class, such as a high-tech company like Apple.

“When leadership practices fit the customer promise and company type, the organization thrives,” says a synopsis in the book catalog AMACOM, a division of the American Management Association.

To share a thought, a favorite quote or other wisdom about leadership, email Lisa Green at lisagreen@jg.net. Lead On also appears online as a blog at www.journalgazette.net/blog/lead-on/