Scanned, Searched, Hired?


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Greetings. The excitement over TSA’s “enhanced” airport screening techniques seems to have quieted down after a month of concern, controversy, and claims that our Privacy–spelled with a capital “P”–is being violated. To refresh your memory, in an effort to protect the traveling public TSA has come up with two engaging new search options–“total body scans” and “comprehensive pat-downs”–which sound a lot like services that some people pay a lot of money for at private medical clinics and spas of their choosing. But prior to boarding an airplane these options seem to have rubbed some people the wrong way.

The presumption behind these techniques is a belief that some people try to board airplanes hiding something that could spell disaster. And given this reality, it is important to figure out how to stop them before they board. It’s a noble gesture in these uncertain times though fraught with issues, but I’m not going to get into the politics of it all. Though as someone who flies a lot, I always note that even with all the hassles that now accompany air travel, the only metric I really care about is whether or not the plane lands safely. I’ll accept my three inches of leg room, fees for practically everything, cancelled flights, and a new level of screening in return for greater assurance that the flight will get me from Point A to Point B roughly on schedule and end conveniently on terra firma.

But let’s think about a simple idea from the debate that is actually quite important to our success as companies and organizations–the notion of taking a closer look at people and figuring out what, if anything, they’re hiding and what really makes them tick. Because it turns out that there are many things we fail to discover about people until after we’ve hired them. Things like their real work history, or their work habits, or real personalities, or destructive behaviors, or even their real brilliance. Things that require much more skillful “interviewing” or “screening” to figure out. But things that would help us to decide whether they would be the right fit for the journey we are embarking on…either as potential threats or remarkable contributors to the success we need to achieve. Yet we can only figure them out if we are willing to search beneath the surface–beyond the obvious that is too often standard procedure for many companies making hiring decisions.

So next time you have an critical job to fill, you might want to take a more serious look at your leading candidates–in a way that enables both of you to understand what it means to create the right fit.


We win in business and in life when we scratch beneath the surface and discover the issues and genius that might be hiding. It’s the only way to reach our full potential.


Republished with author's permission from original post.

Alan Gregerman
Alan Gregerman is an award-winning author, consultant and keynote speaker who has been called "one of the most original thinkers in business today" and "the Robin Williams of business consulting." His work focuses on helping companies and organizations to unlock the genius in all of their people in order to deliver the most compelling value to their customers.


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