Should I hire second best?

Dear Aunty B,

I recently tried to hire a general manager and I got a few barely decent candidates, but none that are outstanding, even though I have advertised on job sites and through recruitment agencies.

I even offered staff a weekend away if they could suggest a good candidate.

I want to take the business to the next level, but should I be pragmatic about the skills shortage and hire second best? One of the applicants would be a good fit from a skills point of view, but has different values. Should we hire him and hope he can change?

Myles F,


Hi Myles,

Are you nuts? Never hire second best. And don’t go near the candidate with different values. That person could have a major negative impact on the culture of your company.

If you can’t find the best, rethink your strategy.

You might need to restructure for a bit to put off hiring a GM until you find the right one.

Here is the good news; the economy is turning. Sadly during the next few years there will be some great people tossed on to the unemployment heap as their companies downsize or go out of business.

That’s when you can roll up your sleeves, fly your flag and attract the best.

So grit your teeth, don’t capitulate and keep looking! You’ll thank me one day.

Your Aunty B.

Aunty B - Your problems answered by SmartCompany's business bitch
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