The Very Broken Silicon Valley Hiring Process And How To Fix It

Header broken eggs I have lived and worked in the Silicon Valley for over 20 years, and I am fed up. I’m angry and frustrated and burnt. The hiring practices that I have experienced are completely broken. In some respects the crazy success of technology companies here in the valley masks this enormous problem. Technology companies could all multiply that success by fixing the hiring process.

From lack of business management perspective to the dysfunctional job description to the confused interview process, there is a ton of room for improvement.

bad boss

Problems Start With Management

Business Insider reports that “more than one-quarter (26 percent) of managers said they weren’t ready to become a leader when they started managing others. Fifty-eight percent said they didn’t receive any management training” (and that is the general population, not focused on high tech).

As we have all seen with the growing issue of diversity inequity in the workforce, a key concern is that it is human nature for someone to wish to work with and hire a person that looks and acts like them.

..companies miss the mark on high managerial talent in 82% of their hiring decisions.. Why Good Managers Are So Rare, Harvard Business Review Promotion to a management role here in the valley is much more about technical prowess and technical aptitude than management experience. One cause is that as the tech worker gains more and more experience and becomes more valuable and skilled, there are fewer and fewer promotions into higher purely technical ranks available. Hence tons of people are promoted into management who have never been trained in the art of management. Worse, no one asks managers to do any kind of professional growth. ..a survey by Progressive Business Publications shows that only 52% of companies trained their managers once a year or less. This lack of training is reflected in the Conference Board Report which found that less than 1/3 of all supervisors or managers were perceived to be strong leaders … The same report found that 2/3 of employees are not motivated to drive their employer’s business goals, leaving a quarter who are simply showing up to collect a check. Obviously, a lack of managerial leadership has a direct correlation to high turnover and low productivity. HR Professionals Magazine So the problem of diversity and broken hiring in general is partly due to this high concentration of technologists in power. A tech heavy manager looks for a tech heavy candidate that matches their own real or perceived tech know howwhen that might be far from what the manager really needs.

Even if managers have deep experience and training on hiring best practices, the other people involved in the process may not. If only 50% of managers are getting training once per year, it is easy to assume the statistics for staff employees receiving interview skills training is miniscule.

Yet less than one-fourth of the managers interviewed had a clear roadmap for how they could develop themselves, and more than half didn’t even know who in their organization was responsible for the development of leaders

Job Descriptions Don’t Describe Real Jobs

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