Why Should HR Ask About Employees’ Hobbies?

Before Asking About Their Experience.

Corporate Therapy is YoBusiness
Tell-Tale Employee Hobbies

2020 has brought a lot of change to the workplace, especially in the field of people selection, motivation (to do their best), and retention. Having lost the luxury to physically see the (potential) employee, HR specialists find themselves not sure what “factual” quality they should rely on when making judgement about hiring and firing.

A good idea to re-start in employee judgement is to start looking for a character that matches your corporate culture rather than the skill, which is basically given to employees on day 1 at work. Virtual guides have made skill less of a problem. We invite you to test-try relying on the employees’ character instead. What’s the easiest way to do that? Start asking about your employees’ hobbies! And refer to our insight guide below.

1. The team player

Who are they? These guys are the ones who engage in any kind of team hobbies, unsurprisingly. Basketball, rugby or any kind of hobby, where your success depends on the team success, and vice versa. These people are great at reaching agreements, are able to follow orders without too much questioning, understand the importance of strategy and tactics. They are usually likeable in a team and are exceptionally good at one or two things.

Fit or fold? Are you building a team-oriented organization? Then, finding team players is a must. Choose team players, if the corporate results are intertwined between departments or similarly hard to separate. Pick team players if you wish to - finally - end that sales vs. marketing feud. This type of employees are great if you are running out of cash and plan to start giving shared incentives. Take advantage of the team players when making collective decisions. To sum up, they are great when building a structured humane corporate culture.

2. The individualist

Who are they? These are the guys who engage in solo-oriented hobbies. Photography, martial arts, painting are a few examples of the types of hobbies, where a person has no team and is on his/her own. This type of employees are usually those who are quick to make decisions, are not inclined to discuss the tactics of their work and are otherwise their corporate-self-oriented.

Fit or fold? These employees are great if you are building a culture of change. They are bold, used to taking responsibility (including the responsibility for making mistakes), and usually have the spine and the stomach to do new things without additional encouragement or instruction. They are a great asset for today’s culture of fast change, and you definitely need them on your team.

3. The ice-breaker

Who are they? Surfers, divers, racers and similar kinds of extreme hobby lovers. They are usually outgoing, brave, and have a strong mind. Although they are not overly loved team members, they are generally admired by their colleagues. This type of employees handle criticism well and are not afraid to start over (and over and over).

Fit or fold? If you wish to build an entrepreneurial culture, you need to put this type of employees in managerial positions. This will guarantee the spread of entrepreneurial culture in the team. Only thing to bear in mind is - you need to give them freedom of choice. But, of course, you know that micromanagement and HR do not belong in one sentence, anyway.

4. The long runner

Who are they? Runners, chess players, cyclists and whoever, who practices endurance hobbies can be called “the long runner”. These are the people who have the gift of the willpower, the patience, and the strategic vision. They are great team leaders. Chances are, if you are an HR, you are one, too. They are good at withstanding any obstacle on the way to the end-result and have good self-motivation skills. The long runners are usually the go-to person in the team, be it advice or support.

Fit or fold? Going through structural change? Make sure you have long-runners on board. When the excitement fades out and uncertainty creeps in, they will be your allies in the team. The long runners are great team members when working on long-term projects. But, if they are given short-term projects, they may disengage too soon. To sum up, the long runners are a great fit to a long-term-oriented corporate culture.

The natural question you may be having now is - can you have them all on one team? The answer is, yes, as long as you know what your corporate culture vision is. You can’t make a soup of beetroots, and beetroots only. But, if the beetroot is dominant, then, it is a beetroot soup. Likewise, you should be concentrating on what your dominant corporate culture is. And culture is created by character.