I had a rule, which I really did honor. I told everyone who worked for me that the poorest performer would be terminated each year. I’m not sure that’s even legal in today’s polically correct society.
What a great idea…unfortunately, executing this nowadays would probably be a nightmare. I would assume that you could have new hires sign contracts accepting the fact that termination after a year of underachieving was a possibility given a strict system of guidelines (which would also be defined and described). If they were leery of signing, that would be a red flag … if they were gung-ho and couldn’t wait to sign the papers … he/she was the one you wanted.
Reading back on all of this, I think it really shows the importance of the hiring process. It really seems you could filter out 90+% of the people that would not be good for your company right up front. Companies send workers through HR … if you pass the HR interview, you meet with engineers. This is actually the right idea; however I see one problem. Do those engineers have stakes in the company? If they don’t, what is the real incentive to take the hiring process this seriously.
Let me explain … one could argue that everyone has a stake in the company because the company must profit or everyone will lose a job. It is not that black and white. Companies may continue to succeed because 25% within the company is doing all the work. So, even if bad hires are made, the company will still stay afloat.
One possible incentive could be for every year a new hire succeeds and remains part of the company, those responsible for the hire would get some sort of bonus.
Of course, I am speaking business philosophy now. Philosophy, work ethic, and business … 3 of my favorite subjects.