The Ten-Dollar Interview

"Great effort springs naturally from great attitude." - Pat Riley

I have found a great way of saving time with prospective employees. I quickly outline the positions we have open and hand them a copy of one of my books. If it’s a sales position, I give them my Cunningly Clever Selling. If it’s a marketing position or service position, I give them Cunningly Clever Marketing. I tell them to go read it and call me back when they have. It costs me about ten dollars and saves me hours of wasted time.

Rarely do they ever call back. If they can’t be bothered to read a book in order to get a job, they sure won’t be motivated to read after they’ve gotten the job.

You don’t even need a book on your specific industry, just one you admire that espouses the general type of ideas, principles, and values that you do.

Another technique I use with our more technical jobs is to invite the prospective employee to go through our entire suite of online video demonstrations, which takes about two hours. More people do this than actually read but, again, few people call back. They either can’t be bothered, think the job is too hard, or simply realize that they don’t actually have the skills for the job.

A third and even more practical way of interviewing is to ask the prospect to do a small project: design an ad, write some copy, come up with a short sales script—whatever makes sense for the position you are offering. Many will refuse on “professional” principle, many more will never be seen again because they really can’t do the job and they know it, and a few will comply.

Nothing is a better use of interview time than providing tools that allow candidates to disqualify themselves without spending your valuable time or money training them.

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