Proverbs 13:20 “Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.
Things do not become easier. It is you who becomes better. If you just sit there and do not improve, you will experience tough life by every other coming day.
We have been looking for an accountant to join our team. It is not easy to find a good professional. This week, we shortlisted three candidates who had passed a series of written hands-on exercises well demonstrating strong technical skills in accounting.
At Summit Consulting, we have arranged our interviews such that face to face interaction with the panel comes last. We don’t want our top management to spend a lot of time on candidates that are not up to it. Because employee recruitment is one of our top priority roles, we make sure all managers attend to increase our odds of selecting the best candidate.
We prefer candidates that are ethical, passionate and persistent. The written interviews test technical skills. The panel interview test interpersonal skills. We know we can teach technical skills. It is very difficult to teach integrity. Someone who has been getting away with committing fraud will likely continue doing it regardless compensation and working conditions.
One candidate that had come on top of the written interview was asked by a fellow panelist, “why did you fail Uganda Certificate of Education Exams.” His answer took us by surprise, “I was sick plus I focused on the papers that they told us was the real exam.” We could not understand whether this was honest response. And you don’t want panelists to be divided over the quality of your responses. We could not take the candidate because of his disclosed history of having attempted to cheat exams. Any professional, an accountant at that, must be and be seen to be independent and a person whose integrity beyond reproach.
Another candidate was asked “why he was attempting only one Certified Public Accountant paper at a time, yet he had an option of attempting four at one sitting.” His answer was “I don’t have enough school fees to register for all the four papers per sitting. If I get this job, I will make sure that I attempt as many papers I can afford.”
We want to work with people who are motivated and focused. The answer by the second candidate indicates passion for the profession and job motivation. You need to work with such people. We gave him the job.
You can train skills. But not ethics and integrity. Keep that in mind wherever you go and in whatever you do.
Bernabas M. Mugisa, Mr. Strategy, helps plant the seed of transformation. Visit www.mustaphamugisa.com to transform your life today. No one is too good to be great. Are you?