Hiring Tip #1 – It starts before the interview

by Tina on January 1, 2009

in Build Your Team,For OBMs,General Biz

When it comes to hiring i’m reminded of the philosophy:

How you do anything is how you do everything

As an OBM I’ve done my fair share of hiring virtual professionals over the years, and i’ve found that you can learn ALOT about someone from the very first moment you connect with them (which is usually by email). How people respond to you from day one can be a good reflection of how they would actually be on a project.

There are a few things you can pay attention to that may help filter out some potentially unsuitable people along the way:

  • How quickly do they respond to your emails?
    I expect a 24 hour turnaround time when I send someone an email (except on weekends/holidays of course). If I send someone an email saying ‘hey, i’m interested in hiring you’ and I don’t hear from them for 3 days I will most likely not consider them further. Most of our projects require a 24 hour turnaround in communcation, and if I don’t see that right away it is a red flag.
  • Did they provide what you asked them for?
    If you asked them for specific information, did they provide it in full detail? I’m actually surprised how often I will get¬†a response from a potential hire and they didn’t include half of the information I requested. If they have a lack of attention to details in these early stages it makes me wonder how much would be missed on the job.
  • What is the tone of their response?
    Are they casual or do they take a more professional approach in their writing? (depending on your needs you may prefer either one). How is their spelling & grammar? The actual tone of their response can be very telling Рfor example if you are hiring someone to response to customer service emails and their spelling/grammar is poor that may not be a good fit.
  • Do they follow up with you?
    If you haven’t responded to someone in a day or so, do they follow up with you? I’ll admit that I sometimes do this on purpose – not respond to an email for a couple of days just to see if the person will follow up with me to check in. If someone is eager/excited about the opportunity they should send a follow up email to check in with you (even just to ensure that you received their last message).

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Nichole January 6, 2011 at 2:57 pm


I found you just as I am re-tooling my business and wondering how to even start taking it an online business. I love your straight talk and valuable resources.

Many thanks for your contributions to successful businesses!


Phyllis June 8, 2011 at 4:35 pm

I needed the reminder to do follow-ups. I think more than one follow-up is not inappropriate. One in 2 – 3 days, another in a month. I have even sent an email a year later, just to check in to ask if they any questions. Or if they mentioned a specific that I can mention in the year-later follow-up, such as they are looking at a particular method of advertising and I’ve met someone or read something that might be of interest to them, I include that, just to let them know that I remember them as an individual.


Margaret June 15, 2011 at 5:21 am

Actually follow up works both ways. I get frustrated when I apply for a position and do not hear from the company that I was not successful at the initial screening. I am never sure how many emails I should send to get a response. In the majority of cases, I give up because no one is responding. I believe a simple email saying thanks but you did not make the list or something along those lines would be appreciated. It saves time for me and for the company.


Tina June 15, 2011 at 10:39 am

so true Margaret – it is frustrating especially when you’ve put alot of heart and soul into repsonding to someone.


Marcy January 11, 2012 at 2:28 pm

Hi Tina – thanks for sharing so much great info on your site. I’m getting a lot out of this.

One quick typo for you to correct – what’s funny is its location;
for example if you are hiring someone to response to customer service emails and their spelling/grammar is poor that may not be a good fit.

I think you meant to say: “respond” vs. “response” :-)

Keep up your good work helping to create OBMs and best wishes for a great year!



Tina January 11, 2012 at 7:03 pm

LOL – oh my goodness Marcy, I guess that means I wouldn’t be a fit for the job… hilarious, I totally hadn’t noticed that before.


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: