What is unconscious bias? Everyone knows that a lack of diversity will impact social issues, but not everyone takes the time to step back and review how hiring can contribute. Because it is unconscious, hiring managers don’t even realize they’re making these choices. It goes beyond just the things we can see such as race and gender. There may be personality types that some hiring managers prefer over others. These decisions impact the process as well as the candidates and those who are hired. If you let unconscious bias impact your decisions, it may affect the quality of hire in the long run. So how do you curb unconscious bias? Here are 3 steps you can take starting today.
Create a Structured Interview Process
Unstructured interviews are the biggest challenge facing your hiring process. It happens so often we don’t even think about it. Hiring managers will “go with their gut” when making a decision. But this can rule out qualified candidates who will bring a new perspective to the team. When you do this you’re asking your unconscious bias to take the wheel and make the decision. To eliminate this issue, create a structured interview process where every candidate is asked the same questions. Be sure to take notes so you can evaluate the candidate’s answers. If you create a checklist, you’ll be comparing their ability to handle the job and understand what each candidate truly brings to the table.
Consider Culture Add Instead of Culture Fit
One of the most common concepts in hiring is to look for the corporate culture fit. But what if we looked at the same concept from a different side. Rather than trying to fit an exact individual in with the current makeup of your team, consider what your team is missing that a new employee can provide? This takes to focus off of hiring someone who is a replica of all the other people in your department and puts the emphasis on the individual skills, abilities, potential, and mindset.
Diversify Your Sources for Hiring
When you fish in the same pond, you get the same fish. Every time you search for candidates in the same places, especially if you consider them “tried and true,” you will only find the same kinds of people. Instead, diversify your recruiting sources. This helps you increase the possible diversity of the candidates who apply for your jobs. For example, if you primarily use online job boards, consider other options such as social media or referrals. Advertise in diverse communities to reach people who may not have had access to your job in the past.
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