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In an industry with such a high turnover rate, staffing changes are a constant consideration for any bar manager. Make the right decision and your team’s lives becomes easier, their morale becomes higher, and their work becomes more profitable – but make the wrong decision, and everything can turn around in an instant.

When a dutiful hire turns out to be a dud, recovering is exhausting — especially if it was your job to vet them in the first place.

It can be challenging to develop a system for evaluating potential hires, more so when staff is needed and options are slim. Managing a hospitality team is about selecting diverse people to fill diverse roles, each often requiring a completely different skill set.

The key to selecting a team member, partner, associate, supplier or whoever, is to pay attention and ask the right big-picture questions.

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Don’t get snowed by someone who is just a smooth talker if you are hiring for organizational skills. Don’t be fooled by a great look or presence when you are hiring for back of house. Take the time to make sure what you see can match up with what you really need.

Some years ago l read a short article that challenged the reader to apply a scientific thought process to the suitability of an individual for a role or position. 
It’s easy to think you do this already, but in the moment so much of what you set out to evaluate can be easily be forgotten.

Understanding the need for a process allowed me to look beyond the first impressions (and beyond what I thought of as standard “interview” success) to really make sure I had gathered enough initial information to clarify common success factors.

What do you really need to hit on in order to make role selection possible? The answer can be boiled down to the 4C’s…



The 4C’s

  1. Capacity

Does the person have the knowledge, intellectual skills and experience for the job, position?

  1. Compatibility

Does the person have the personality, character traits 
to fit into the organisation?

  1. Commitment

Does the person have the enthusiasm for the role long term, is there a burning desire to succeed, what is their need and or needs?

  1. Capability

Does this person have the ability to grow, learn, follow, lead, innovate, apply, assist and build?

Expanding each of the 4C’s into questions specific to the position being considered allowed me to build a clearer picture of what I wanted to see in an ideal applicant.

Running through what you hope to hear from a future hire will allow you to build a clearer picture of who the right person for your job is.

Next time you are hiring, ask the right questions and make sure the contender fits into your 4C’s. With a bit of extra insight you will be one step closer to hiring your next rock star team member.

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