Capp’s five-step approach to strengths-based recruitment

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January 2012
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Daily Archives: January 24, 2012

An Alternative View on Executive Bonuses

Executive pay and bonuses have hit the headlines again as we approach the bank bonus season, and politicians from all sides wade in to share their views on how and how much top executives should be remunerated. Rather than debate who is right or wrong, I’d like to share with you some research which provides an alternative model for how we think about the links between reward and performance.

 

The received wisdom has it that people will work harder and perform better if they are to receive a bonus that they spend on themselves. Yet there is also a growing body of evidence from the psychology research literature that shows that it really is better to give than to receive. But what does this mean for bonuses?

 

Michael Norton and colleagues asked this question, examining whether people who received a prosocial bonus (that they then spent on others or donated to charity) differed from their colleagues who received a personal bonus (that they spent on themselves).

 

Compellingly, they did.

 

In Norton’s first study, a group of Australian bank employees who were given a $100 voucher to give to charity reported higher levels of happiness and job satisfaction than their colleagues, who either received a $50 voucher to give to charity, or no voucher at all. Donating the company’s money to charity helped employees feel happier and more satisfied with their jobs. But what about their performance?

 

To address this, Norton’s second study looked at how prosocial incentives impacted performance. With a sample of Belgian pharmaceutical sales people, and a sample of Canadian dodge ball players, Norton found that prosocial incentives significantly outperformed personal incentives in their impact on team performance.

 

When team members received a prosocial bonus as distinct from a personal bonus, the performance of the team as a whole was significantly higher. For the pharmaceutical sales team, this computed to a significant return on investment: €10 spent on prosocial incentives returned a massive €52 in superior sales performance.

 

So, when it comes to thinking about how to ensure bonuses deliver performance, it seems that prosocial bonuses have the edge. Perhaps Vince Cable could offer a sizable donation to their favourite charity for the first FTSE 350 remuneration committee to adopt this approach?

 

Source: http://rady.ucsd.edu/faculty/seminars/2011/papers/norton.pdf

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The Emerging Practice of Strengths-Based Recruitment

There are greater numbers of candidates and more people with high potential on the market than ever before.

As a result, it is vital that HR professionals think differently about recruitment and approach interviews in a new way in order to ensure that the right candidates are chosen for the right roles.

 

Although the competency-based method of assessment is still being used unchallenged in many HR departments, the method has fundamental flaws.

 

While the focus is on assessing what people claim they can do or to have them provide examples of what they have done, the problem is that most recruitment and careers advice services run classes to help candidates practice their interview technique on this basis.

 

In contrast, using a strengths-based method helps employers to recruit people based on their natural talents by enabling them to identify and assess the things that candidates not only do well but also love doing. The approach is more reliable because it matches an individual’s strengths to a given role, ensuring that job applicants are not just capable, but will actually be engaged and motivated enough to live up to expectations.

 

Strengths-based recruitment likewise enables people to be more authentic and to show themselves for who they genuinely are. Practitioners are trained to look for energy and authenticity as well as evidence of high performance in relation to the strengths under consideration – a combination that should guarantee the appointment of a genuine high flier.
To read more, join the 1474 HR directors and professionals who have read this article on strengths-based recruitment in full on HR Zone.

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