Whether you’re hiring a service provider, a receptionist, or a manager, there are certain things you want in a spa employee and some obvious ways to spot these things.
You can tell if someone has the experience, required skills, and education from their resume. And you can gauge a lot about personality during an interview. But people are on their best behavior during the hiring process, which means you don’t necessarily get the whole picture from just these things. That’s why hiring managers need to read between the lines for signs that someone is (or isn’t) going to be a successful employee.
Look for these indicators that a job candidate is someone you want on your spa’s team. You’ll be glad you did.
The spa employee you want to hire is someone who…
… is warm and friendly to everyone.
Watch how your candidate behaves not just with you, but with everyone. Do they smile at the guests, receptionist and service providers? Do they make conversation or are they dismissive of those people and only interested in you, because you’re doing the hiring? You’re looking for someone who is good with people and interested in them, and this is a good test. If they’re not nice and attentive to everyone, don’t hire them.
…remembers people’s names.
It’s a small thing, but it’s such a big thing. Watch when you introduce a candidate to others whether they then use that person’s name in the conversation. Or at the end, when they say “It was nice to meet you…” While not using names isn’t a sign not to hire someone, using them indicates a level of social awareness that should be very appealing to employers in any people business.
You can tell whether someone is really listening to you by the way they respond to you. Body language is one indicator, though not a foolproof one. Someone who is leaning forward with their feet pointing towards you is probably engaged with you. Not doing this doesn’t necessarily mean they’re not engaged – as it’s difficult to read people without getting a baseline (we don’t all have the same body language, despite what some “experts” will tell you), but it’s a potential indicator. You can also tell if someone is really listening by the flow of the conversation. Someone who is listening will respond by echoing what you’ve said and building on specific comments by asking related questions. If someone isn’t really listening, the conversation won’t flow as well as it could. This can sometimes be chalked up to nervousness, but it’s something to be aware of.
…shows a genuine interest.
You want a candidate to ask questions about the job, company, workplace, and culture. Someone who doesn’t ask any questions is always a red flag — and you want them to ask the right type of questions. While questions like “How much money will I earn in a week?” and “How soon can I take a vacation?” are fair game, they’re not the sort of queries you want a potential employee to be leading with. People should be asking about your company goals and workplace culture. They should be asking what success looks like for the position for which they’re applying, and what you love about working there. They should be interested to know who their coworkers are and what the client base is like. If the questions are all self centred, that is a big warning sign.
… is eager to learn.
While you definitely want to hire someone who knows their stuff, you also want someone who is seeking to add to their knowledge base. Do they show an interest in taking extra courses and workshops? Do they want to know more about what you know? The last thing you want in an employee is someone who believes that they have nothing to learn from anyone. In fact, you’re better off hiring someone who is willing to learn, and training for skill, than someone who is unwilling but has all the skills you need. The latter person will always have a bad attitude, while the former will soon have both the skills and a great attitude.
…will go above and beyond.
Look for signs that someone will go the extra mile in both their work life and in the world. Look for people with a history of volunteer work or of organizing, or participating in, social responsibility initiatives. Ask them to tell you about a time they went above and beyond for a customer or to help out a colleague. You can tell a lot about a person by what they think it means to go “above and beyond.”
…speaks positively of others.
Saying negative things about other people, including a former employer or colleagues, is a bad sign. This is an important test of character and of diplomacy skills. Even when the negative comments are well deserved, trashing others shows, at best, a lack of restraint and, at worst, a malicious spirit and an unwillingness to take responsibility. Either way, this is not someone you want around. Listen for positive comments about people. This is a huge bonus! Saying very little when asked about a former employer might also indicate an attempt to be diplomatic, which could be a good sign. Or not. It might also indicate that they were fired for cause, but you should be able to figure things out by also checking references.
Don’t underestimate the importance of checking references. Glowing references are among the best indicators you can have.
Good spa employees are hard to find. We can lessen the chances of making a bad hire by looking for signs of a good one.