Short sight or foresight?

Posted on March 4, 2015 by


eyechartThe Urquhart Partnership’s Chartered Psychologist, Julie McDonald, shares some of her recruitment and selection “insight”…quite literally…

A year ago my world began to look decidedly indistinct and blurry. Colours became muted and I felt like I was looking through opaque glass. I rubbed my eyes, tried eye drops and finally went to the Optician, anxious about what she might say. Happily I wasn’t going blind… or mad; it was nothing more serious than cataracts.

So, after a long year of waiting lists and hospital visits, I can see clearly again. What a relief! Everything looks clear and colours are bright…like that moment in the movie “The Wizard of Oz” when Dorothy enters Oz and everything turns from black and white to glorious technicolour!

It is amazing what human beings can adapt to; I hadn’t realised how blurry my vision had become until my eyes were fixed. I just got used to it.

As I was recuperating, I thought about how we “see” the world in a broader sense, particularly at this time of economic concern and challenge; a time where the future most definitely looks more than a little blurry.

It can be easy when things are difficult and stressful for organisations to take a short sighted view, to cut back on “non-essentials” and just do the “basics”.

However if we don’t recruit and select properly we can be storing bigger problems up for the future.

So, at a time of cost-consciousness, in a declining market where there is an increase in the availability of talent, organisations shouldn’t take the quick or cheap hiring option. They should really focus on improving the way they recruit and select to reduce the risk of making poor hiring decisions. It’s particularly critical at this time when we don’t want to make mistakes which can cost time and, more importantly, money in the longer term.

Using rigorous selection processes, personality profiles, ability tests, designing simple assessment measures and training people in effective interviewing techniques can reduce the risk of taking a poor fit into your organisation and help you to make more focussed and better hiring decisions.

If you’d like to have a discussion about cost effective ways which can enhance your recruitment and selection process, please call The Urquhart Partnership on 01224 651814 or email Campbell Urquhart, Group Managing Director at