Wouldn’t it be great if all your new recruits fit perfectly into the vacant positions you wanted them to fill? And if everyone on a team worked in a role that allowed them to let their talents shine and played on their strengths, while others compensated for any weakness?
Some of the hardest things to get right in business are staffing open positions and aligning the members of a team so that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. But what if there were a tool that allowed you to put the right people into the right job — and to turn your organization into a true “human capital bank”?
Thinkergy’s innovation people profiling method TIPS (theories, ideas, people, systems) profiles people based on their preferred styles of thinking, working, interacting, living, and innovating. Every candidate who answers the TIPS profiling questionnaire is classified in line with their cognitive preferences as one of 11 innovator profiles (theorist, ideator, partner, systematizer, conceptualizer, promoter, organizer, technocrat, coach, experimenter and all-rounder).
While I created TIPS originally to improve the people side of innovation, it has many other applications, and can give organizations more talent and people awareness. So, how do we help organizations optimize their mix of human talents and put the right people into the right job?
Step 1. Profile your staff:
Start by making a small investment in your human capital by allowing us to profile all your staff to unveil their innovator profiles and personal styles. Ideally, send them also through a TIPS Innovation Profiling Workshop to animate their different styles and profiles.
Step 2. Create a group profiling map:
Next, we position each one of your employees on a TIPS group profiling map based on their test scores and innovator profiles; a group can be a work team, a department, a business unit, the entire organization, or all of the aforementioned. When looking at a group profiling map, we ask you a number of questions:
- Is there any concentration of profiles in this group? Typically, a map reflects a dominant base and style in line with either your business function, industry, or corporate life cycle stage. For example, Thinkergy is an innovation company, and we’ve just began moving from the initial development to our growth phase. Thus we have a heavy profile concentration around the TIPS base “Ideas” and the TIPS style “Flow”.
- Are there any profile gaps? When you notice a profile concentration, consider adding a few members to the team who are strong in those tasks that don’t come naturally easy to the others.
Step 3. Define each job profile:
A good job profile describes in detail what each position is all about:
- What responsibilities and regular tasks are associated with the role?
- What outputs is the job owner expected to produce?
- What decisions need to be made, and how important are these?
Step 4. Link each job profile to specifics:
How would you sum-up each job profile in just three words? We’ve created a deck with 33 cards (featuring descriptive attribute labels such as “entrepreneurial”, “conceptual” or “quantitative”) to translate a comprehensive job profile into the simple language of TIPS.
We ask a client to pick those three attributes that best describe the essential success factors of each job profile. For example, attributes that fittingly describe a project manager responsible for implementing concrete projects could be “practical”, “operational” and “down-to-earth”.
Step 5. Define suitable TIPS profiles for the role:
Each of the 11 TIPS profiles links to three primary attributes. We use the descriptive labels that a client chooses for each role to recommend a primary, best-fitting as well as one to two secondary profiles. For example, profiles that fit to a project manager (based on the previously listed attributes) are the organizer (primary) and either partner or systematizer (secondary options).
Step 6. Align the job to candidates with a fitting profile:
If the position is already staffed, we check if the incumbent has one of the suggested TIPS profiles. If yes, all is already well. If not, we investigate if swapping the person with a better fitting colleague may lead to a mutually satisfying realignment that makes everyone happy and more productive.
If a role isn’t staffed yet, or if no one in the organization has a fitting profile, then you need to recruit a new candidate — and you can use the TIPS personality test to profile each of them for a good fit.
At the end of this exercise, you should have put every person into the right job —at least in theory. So, with the final step, you take care of linking theory with reality.
Step 7. Track job satisfaction and teamwork improvement:
Do a survey with each individual employee involved in the exercise a few weeks and then six months after the exercise to track satisfaction. Use the feedback to make further alignments if needed. If all is well, give yourself a pat on the back: You have mastered the science and art of putting the right person into the right job.
Do you want to learn more about how our new innovation people profiling method TIPS can help you putting the right people into the right job? Contact us and let us know more about your organization. And good news: We’re launching the TIPS online personality test soon.
© Dr. Detlef Reis 2017. This article was published in parallel in the Bangkok Post under the same title on 13 April 2017.