A colleague of mine recently told me about her son who just landed a job with EB Games Canada. A nice entry level job into the gaming industry, congrats! She explained to me that during the interview, he was presented with several gaming related questions that he was able to answer with ease as he is both passionate and knowledgeable towards video games. This most likely played a part in his success of being hired by the company.
Hearing about gaming related questions being a part of the interview got me thinking. I go into EBs across Ontario quite frequently and on several occasions, I have asked employees basic gaming questions where they had no idea what I was talking about. Now why would someone who has very little knowledge of video games be working at EB? A possible reason is that maybe the interview process is not consistent. Perhaps some employees are hired for knowledge and some hired for other skills such as selling or communication. Although making money is important, customer satisfaction should be taken into consideration. When I see an employee attempting to sell a bad outdated game to some kid’s mom, I just shake my head. I am sure employees with the knowledge and passion cringe at the very thought. Unfortunately they are pressured to upsell and what not from management. Seeing these interesting hiring practices and company policies taking place, just reinforce the notion that hiring smart is so essential in an organization. Organizations need to understand that a bad hire can be super costly whether it be through decreased customer satisfaction, employee to employee disputes, decreased sales and so on.
Make sure employees are the best fit for your organization and the position they are being hired for. Perhaps they are just in the wrong position or need to be part of a team. Pair the sellers with the knowledgeable employees and the outcome could be beneficial.
Another good example I can think of is Microsoft/Xbox Customer Support not knowing about their own products. But that is a story I could go on forever about and I am sure others know what I am talking about.
I would love to hear what others think about this matter and if you have any of your own stories of being let down by gaming industry employees who don’t seem to be the right fit.