A test is a set of questions, or problems, used as a means of evaluating the abilities, aptitudes, or skills of an individual or a group. Managers ask; can you test candidates once we determine the finalists? Yes we can, but you must understand what you are testing for, what the results mean, and appropriate assessments should be determined. There are two critical aspects of testing or assessing potential team members.
First, assessment should be an integral part of the selection process, to ensure the expectations for a position are clear and measurable. Without well defined expectations for meeting the short and long term demands of a role, and achieving organizational goals, it is difficult to illustrate a role to candidates. When the view of a role is fuzzy, beyond education, experience, and skills, some expectations can default to personal interpretation. Just past the honeymoon period, which may be the initial thirty days, the downside of misinterpreted information begins to shows up. A well defined role description illustrates responsibilities and contributions, and enables you to determine the appropriate tools for assessing right fit.
Second, you must understand assessment results within the context of a given role, to know if the part of the mind you are assessing illustrates a benefit or deficit to performance. This bears repeating because information that does not target the right performance factors does not help you. Assessments can evaluate the value of one’s natural efforts toward the role. The level of knowledge, experience or personality will have an influence on how a candidate thinks and feels about the role. A person’s natural method of operation, or execution, will influence how they get things done. All of this is important to understanding how a person will perform and must be understood before testing can be effective.
How should testing be integrated into the selection process? Setting a foundation for a successful working relationship goes beyond the initial profiling and testing of candidates. Managers that consider assessments as part of the selection process are on the right track. Smart Selection includes the appropriate assessment of candidates as this relates to what they know about the work, how they think and feel about the role, and how they instinctively need to execute the role. Defining the range of results necessary to succeed in a role helps to avoid the surprise of misaligned values that don’t fit the role. Do this ahead of candidate selection and then assess candidate results against the role requirements. Now you can test for success.
For help in Smart Selection and asking the right questions, contact us at FIREPOWER Teams! We are here to help!