Andy Kelk

Digital Technology Leader


When hiring – skills first or culture first?

This week, Greythorn released the results of their survey on IT hiring in Australia. They concluded that “CIOs are increasingly hiring new IT staff based in their ability to learn new skills.”

This move away from box-ticking, if true, is certainly a good development and something that smart leaders have been promoting for some time. They understand the importance of people’s adaptability and attitude when making successful hiring decisions.

I recently had the chance to speak with Kerri Rusnak who had been working as a Head of Technology at the REA Group. She espoused the importance of hiring people for who they are, rather than the skills they’ve mastered so far: “Personality is the leader. A good person will be ambitious, a good person will want to learn, a good person will be adaptable, a good person will be open to change and transparent. Those are the really important things. Anybody can learn a skill, whatever that skill is. In most modern workplaces, the jobs that we do, you can be trained in.”

You can hear more of what Kerri had to say on this topic and on the theme of organisational culture in a new Podcast series that I’m launching today. It features a number of leadership practitioners talking about a different leadership topic each episode. It’s called Feel and it’s available to listen to and subscribe to right now. You can also find it in the iTunes store.

Here’s episode 1 : Creating and nurturing your culture


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