Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Review: Pierre Mornell's 45 Effective Ways for Hiring Smart

Secretaries. Youth pastors. Teachers.

Yes, part of a pastor's job is hiring other people -- and if you'd like some ideas on how to do a better job of this, try Pierre Mornell's book, 45 Effective Ways for Hiring Smart.

A psychiatrist who has consulted with firms ranging from Intuit to Kinko's, Mornell has put together a well-organized and easy-to-read guide that offers 45 effective ways for you to . . . okay, you can probably figure out how I'm going to end this sentence.

Unfortunately, Mornell doesn't offer much advice for recruiting volunteers; what's more, many of his suggestions won't work unless you're chairing the search committee. When it comes to hiring a new teacher, for instance, you'll probably be able to use no more than two or three of his ideas.

But even if you're doing nothing more than picking a new Sabbath School secretary, Mornell's book is still worth a look.
  • His ideas are practical.
  • His examples are interesting.
  • His summaries are helpful -- especially when it comes to legal issues.
I especially appreciated his insistence that everyone has weaknesses . . . and it's not enough to discover those weaknesses if we don't discuss them with applicants and give them a chance to tell their side of the story.

And yes, this is also a good book for people who are looking for a job. Not only does Mornell cover the questions you'll likely be asked, he also lists many of the things you don't want to do in a job search -- things such as showing up late, driving a filthy car, or interrupting an interview to phone your therapist for advice.

So buy this book -- and buy a copy for the chair of your school board. As Mornell points out, "You can hire smart, or you can manage tough . . . but it's a lot easier to do the first than the other."

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