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Zombies Do Not Make Good Employees! [infographic]

Having a warm body fill that vacant seat in your office may seem like a better option than nothing, but beware: Your new hire could be a zombie.

No, not the living dead type. More like the deadbeat variety.

A bad employee could cost you upwards of $50,000 when all is said and done. While salary makes up part of the figure, to really calculate the full cost, you have to factor in recruiting, lost business, training and possible legal action. [Mashable]

The scarcest commodity in business is not customers or technology capital — its people. And the greatest challenge for recruiters and leaders isn’t just hiring people — it’s hiring the right people for the right jobs.  Zombies simply can’t compete against people with passion. Anything a zombie can do can be done by a hungry worker in a low cost location. You can’t outsource people who create value, but you can’t create value if you hate your work. [Glassdoor]

“Forty-one percent of companies estimate that a bad hire cost them more than $25,000. One in four say it cost them over $50,000.”

Calculating employee turnover costs is tricky, but once you add up:

  • Cost of time spent writing/posting jobs, reviewing resumes & interviewing candidates
  • Cost of time spent training & providing orientation
  • Cost of salary, benefits and perks
  • Cost of providing severance or (yikes!) handling a lawsuit

Then add on the often overlooked costs of making the wrong hire:

  • Lost clients and new business opportunities
  • Subpar work and rework due to mistakes
  • Inefficient resource management
  • Blown deadlines
  • Lower team morale

Staffing firm Vitamin T created an infographic to help you avoid hiring the wrong person. Because they care, and honestly, after working with thousands of clients of all shapes and sizes, they know just how spot a zombie. [Vitamin T]

The ‘Zombie Test’

The numbers are gruesome and impact both hiring managers and their teams. In fact, zombie uprising should be contained as quickly as possible. For a really in-depth survival guide, you should check UpMo‘s post on “The Manager’s Guide to Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse.” A company’s culture and the leadership that sustains it are responsible for determining whether or not employees are susceptible to a zombie mentality.

We also like this “Zombie Test” that was created by Bill Jerome in Business First. The Zombie Test can be summarized by five questions.

  1. Does the company support or even encourage a culture of self-preservation and the status quo? These companies accept “good enough.” They look to eliminate conflict that might stimulate new thinking rather than embrace its opportunity. On the other hand, companies with “zero-zombie tolerance” also have zero-tolerance for accepting the status quo.
  2. Does the company enable political nests that breed complacency? These environments reveal that there are perpetual idea-killers lurking in the company. New ideas are sucked dry by those who wield the greatest political clout.
  3. Do company surveys measure employee empowerment to change or, instead, encourage a herd mentality? If evaluations focus on the trivial rather than what truly has a lasting effect, the company will simply “major on the minors” rather than enjoy radical progress.
  4. Are new employees required to “blend in” or are they encouraged to bring in new ideas? The average tenure for new executives tends to last under 18 months. Companies give lip service to change, but when confronted with new concepts, they are more likely to eliminate disruptions rather than embrace a culture of true diversity that includes new management styles or perceptions.
  5. Is there an overriding vision that the customer drives the success of the organization? When the customer’s current and anticipated needs are paramount above politics and complacency, zombies are exposed.

It becomes clear who is dedicated to the company’s success and who is dedicated to self-preservation and comfort. Zombie-proof companies always are pushing the envelope for the next level of success.

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