Monday, March 21, 2011

Taking My Lumps

Would you like one lump or two?
This morning was the second time since Friday that I was woken up by a phone call.  On the other end?  An angry client chewing me out for the actions of another person.  You see, I run a staffing company that supplies over 30 different companies in DFW with personnel.  Some clients just have one of our associates on staff while others may use 20 or more.  Some of our personnel occupy entry level, general labor positions while others occupy management level.  And of course there is a decent number that occupy positions in between.

I have now been working in this field for close to 12 years.  You would think by now that I would be used to getting calls like this but I haven't.  Don't get me wrong.  I understand that part of my job is to get the negative and positive feedback when our candidates succeed or fail.  It has just always been a challenge for me to get get yelled at for the actions and behaviors of other people.  It might make more sense if I had any ability to control a persons mind and the decisions they make with their lives.  But all attempts to gain this super power have  thus far met with failure.  So...we continue to screen people with the tools that we do have.  We interview, we test, we background check, we perform reference investigations, and we drug test.  These techniques DO indeed weed out some bad apples.  However, there will be those that make it through our quality control process.  And we cannot know just how good of a worker someone truly is until they actually go to work.

I have had many a person interview really well, only to prove that is all they are actually good at.  In the same respects I have had others interview rather poorly, only to prove to be amazingly hard working associates.  I guess that's the rub.  My business is not and probably never will be an exacting science.  Screening techniques have come a long way but we still have our fair share of failures.  And though it still seems odd to get these calls, I know its part of the job.  I will take my lumps even IF they rightly belong on someone elses shoulders.

So how is your Monday morning going?