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Unique Business Contribution – An End to Hit-and-Miss Casualty Hiring

Many leaders aspire to be a serving-leader, leading with heart and dedicating themselves to the successful development of the people and the organisation through responsible stewardship and hiring the ‘right people for the right place’.

Part of responsible stewardship and of developing an organisation successfully, is to having a personal stake in the hiring process and the creation of top performing (leadership) teams.

The idea that successful hiring can be delegated is proven wrong time and time again, resulting in an unprecedented amount of hit-and-miss casualty hiring and costly staff attrition, which still takes place in companies across industries and on a global scale.

Not only do most of the diverse candidates from generations Z, Y and the Millennials, want to ‘experience’ leadership in the hiring process, successful hiring is greatly dependent upon leadership’s involvement to building the requirements for a solid business case for the new hire.

This business case ought to be defined as the “unique business contribution” of the new hire. This is a fundamental requirement and prerequisite for any credible and successful hiring process of employees, contractors, or freelancers.

“Pair a unique business contribution with an individual who likes to produce the kind of measurable business outcome and you have an unbeatable business match.”

So, how are business contributions defined in summary?

First, they are not defined by just summing up a list of tasks/responsibilities originating from an old and prior used job description, but by a new hire’s individual unique organisational purpose, duty and tasks.

This in its totality provides a concrete, measurable unique business contribution – as defined by leadership and the hiring manager.

Often times, leadership fails to recognise that the business requirements, even for a new hire who will replace some one as a result of organic growth or attrition, cannot be identical to when the person was hired some time ago . Naturally, leadership has evolved, the organisation and the team has evolved market conditions changed – in other words, nothing is really comparable to that earlier moment in time.

“To make hiring a mutual beneficial and ethical process, the employer is bound to clearly and upfront, define the unique business contribution for a specific role/position and to actively discuss this during the hiring process.”

The above sharply contrasts a typical hiring process, where individuals often are selected against a dusted-off job description, past performance taken from a curriculum vitae and other mostly subjective criteria.

Hiring based upon these ‘criteria’ frequently leads to the surprising discovery that the new hire does not perform within the new company, even though he/she had great similar business experience and historically performed well in (an) other environment(s).

Soon, the flailing new hire will be reported by colleagues and leadership as a team/culture misfit – Either self-directed, or forced, the employee will be leaving the organisation and the human sacrificing and business costly hiring cycle may start all over again.

“Not spending time to clearly define a unique business contribution may look like less effort, saving time and money. However, the ensuing business challenges in the form of organisational, ethical, financial and human resources burden can no longer be overlooked and considered business sustainable.”

In my humble opinion, it is a mandatory part of an ethical hiring process for both the organisation and the prospective employee, contractor, or freelancer to be aware of and freely discuss about the required unique business contribution – To carefully evaluate this against what the individual likes to do and can contribute. Hence, the creation of a mutual advantageous ‘joint-venture’, i.e. joining the team.

An added ‘bonus’ of the hiring based upon required unique business contribution is also that much less on-boarding and training time (and capital) will need to be allocated per individual. Quite simply, the result is entirely human – A person who is hired through the use of a defined unique business contribution and by nature likes to do certain activities, is quite different from some one who is required to be trained to like to do something.

To many critics this may sound like an entitlement structure to be developed to give home to the diverse employee generations in today’s organisations. However, do not be mistaken or fooled by this.

Someone’s nature cannot be forced and it is often surprising to many how a transparent and measurable hiring process contributes to healthy leadership, communication and at the same time takes care of team/culture fit and many other so called interview and hiring best practices.

My recommendation therefore is to “STOP” before your next internal- or external-hiring process starts and before another dusted off old job description is likely to be used – Start the other way-around and define the measurable and unique business contribution, the business outcome if you will of the new hire, first.

From experience, serving as a leader may often seem a daunting task and hiring to creating top performing teams remains certainly challenging.

However, a the very least you may now consider a revised approach and if taken, this will be a courageous step towards positive people and business results.

Good stewardship includes taking care of the organisation and its people holistically and not being short-sighted. Miss-hiring for the most part can be a thing of the past and involvement as an aspiring servant-leader is not optional. In doing so you contribute to a healthy led organisation and personally will grow and expand leadership and team building skills.

This article was originally published in Leadership Matters on 05 March, 2016.

Johan Reinhoudt

Johan is een voormalige life-sciences executive, oprichter en directeur van Top-Coach en PTSS Voorbij. Hij is de ontwikkelaar van het “True Result™ Executive Coaching 5-Stappenprogramma” (prestatieverbetering), en de “12-weken Coach™” (versneld en blijvend herstel van burn-out).

Dit is executive coaching door een ervaren senior executive en goed opgeleide professionele executive coach, waarbij geavanceerde coaching interventies worden gebruikt. De coaching is daarom dan ook bijzonder geschikt voor executives en professionals die "nu" vooruit willen en die willen investeren in een 1-1 persoonlijk ontwikkelingstraject met blijvende resultaten.

Johan is Master Certified Coach, Effortless Coach en Master Burnout Coach en hij is geaccrediteerd door de Nederlandse Orde van Beroeps Coaches (NOBCO), de Internationale Logosynthese® Vereniging (LIA) en de Internationale Coaching Council (ICC).
Verder is hij geassocieerd met de Europese Mentoring en Coaching Council (EMCC) en de Vereniging voor Uitgebreide Energie Psychologie (ACEP). Hij heeft gedurende de afgelopen twintig jaar vele aanvullende en geavanceerde trainingen gevolgd, waaronder een afgeronde opleiding tot Logosynthese® Practitioner.

Het is Johan ’s missie om met Top-Coach executives en professionals te ondersteunen bij het verhogen van hun persoonlijke prestatie, veerkracht en vitaliteit en daardoor op duurzame wijze bij te dragen aan een gezonde leef- en werkomgeving.

Hij is woonachtig in de regio Utrecht en werkt in een persoonlijk gesprek, live en online met executives en professionals in organisaties door geheel Nederland, maar ook internationaal.

Voor meer informatie kunt u hem vrijblijvend bellen via Tel. 030-200 6761 of e-mailen:

Johan is a former life sciences executive, founder and director of Top-Coach. He is the developer of the "True Result™ Executive Coaching 5-Step Program" (Performance Improvement) and the "12-week Coach™" (Burnout Recovery).

This is advanced executive coaching by an experienced senior executive and well-trained professional executive coach. The coaching is particularly suitable for executives and professionals who want to move forward "now" and who want to invest in a 1-1 personal development proces with permanent results.

Johan is a Master Certified Coach, Effortless Coach and Master Burnout Coach and he is accredited by the Dutch Association of Professional Coaches (NOBCO), the International Logosynthesis® Association (LIA) and the International Coaching Council (ICC).
He is also associated with the European Mentoring and Coaching Council (EMCC) and the Association for Comprehensive Energy Psychology (ACEP). Over the past twenty years, he has completed many additional and advanced training courses, including a completed training to become a Logosynthesis® Practitioner.

It is Johan's mission with Top-Coach to support executives and professionals to increase their personal performance, resilience and vitality and thereby contribute to a healthy living and working environment in a sustainable way.

He lives in the Utrecht region in the Netherlands and works live and online in a personal conversation with executives and professionals in organisations throughout the Netherlands, but also internationally.

For more information you can call him via Tel.+(31) (0)30-200 6761 or e-mail:

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