Yes, this is an Aladdin reference.  Aladdin was a street rat with a penchant for stealing and adventure … living “in the rough” if you will.  But as it turned out, he had all the makings of a hero, a prince, and a leader.  He was a diamond the Agrabah was lucky to have.

You’re looking for diamonds too – top talent for your open position – and sometimes you need to search through a lot of rough.  Some candidates will be obvious choices: years of experience and industry familiarity laid out in a professional resume.  But what about the candidates without experience? Those new to sales or new to the industry?  Their resume certainly isn’t as captivating and your instinct is to pass them by.

I’m going to ask you to pause.  Yes, most people who appear unqualified will be unqualified, but you need to search out potential.  Maybe once you get that pizza delivery driver on the phone you can read a charisma and passion perfect for your job that wasn’t visible on her resume.  In fact, phone screening as part of your hiring process is an excellent way to learn more about candidates while still quickly narrowing the talent pool.

No matter a person’s prior experience, you will be training a new hire on how things work at your company.  So instead of matching up someone’s work history exactly with your job description, look at possible transferrable skills that mark someone’s potential.  You might just find your next top performer.

How do you identify diamonds in the rough?

For more hiring tips follow us on Twitter @CareerPlug

This post was originally published on the CareerPlug Blog.  

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