When you’re on the hunt to find your next superstar employee, it’s helpful to have a good idea of what type of worker you want. Having an ideal employee to aspire to, you’ll be able to read through the job applications to see who could be a potential fit—and who you should pass on.
During your next hiring phase, implement these five key strategies for remote recruiting and retention:
1. Look for examples of overachievement.
While you don’t need to necessarily always hire an overachiever, you should look for times in which a job candidate went above and beyond the call of duty for work. It might have been pitching in when a coworker went on maternity leave or volunteering for a project that no one wanted.
These examples of doing more than what was required shows a strong work ethic, which is just one sign of a quality candidate.
2. Find out how your remote worker prefers to work.
Unless the job you’re hiring for requires specific hours and a set location, remote workers can really work anywhere they please, from a home office to a local coworking space—even from the beaches of Bali (if they have a strong Wi-Fi signal, of course).
For remote employers, having an understanding of what type of work environment suits your potential new hire can give you great insight. After all, if the job candidate is a digital nomad at heart—and your remote company thrives on local monthly get-togethers—he might not be a fit for your company’s culture.
3. Pose a problem to your job candidate.
The workplace can be rife with problems and issues, and that can spread to a remote work environment, too. Thing is, remote workers need to know how to handle problems when they occur and learn to not let them go or wish them away.
So during the interview process, ask the job candidate about a time he had a problem at work, and how he handled it. This can show you the person’s ability to identify an issue, his own ownership or culpability associated with the problem, and what he did to fix it—and how quickly. All of these factors are important, since it will show you if your potential new hire will bring the team up—or drag it down.
4. Query about collaboration.
The heart of a successful remote workforce starts with the ability for all employees to collaborate. That’s why you should make it a point to ask about the person’s collaboration skills. But asking, “Do you like to collaborate?” might not give you a realistic answer, since a savvy job seeker is going to automatically say yes.
Rather, ask your job candidate about a time when he collaborated with employees to the benefit of the team and the company. You’ll discover his collaboration skills (or lack thereof) and his ability to work well with a remote team.
5. Mind the motivation.
It’s really easy for remote workers to become unmotivated and disconnected from the company after awhile. To ensure that your rockstar remote worker doesn’t fall off the radar after a few months, you’ll need to test his motivational mojo. Ask how he’s stayed connected (on both a professional and personal level) to his past jobs.
If he admits that he’s been a strong starter but tends to lose interest in his work over time, you might want to pass on hiring him. But if he mentions how he’s interested in the company, passionate about the industry you’re in, and seems clued in to the company culture, he could be the one to hire.
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