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From the Desk of Brad Smart: The Most Revealing Hiring Question

At Topgrading, Inc. our main business is interviewing — interviewing candidates for hire or promotion to senior jobs, where the costs of bad hires/promotions are what you know to be HUGE! One bad mis-hire of a CFO or COO in a small company can push it to bankruptcy. Learn our most revealing hiring question.

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From the Desk of Brad Smart: How Executives Stay in Shape

Most A Player executives exercise regularly because they believe:
No Pain, YOU Gain!
In my practice of interviewing candidates for executive jobs, I have asked more than 2,000 high performers about the exercise they get. Years ago I started taking careful note of executives who were “on again, off again” fitness buffs, but who finally managed to stick with an exercise program.

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From the Desk of Brad Smart: Retaining Employees with Huge Praise Failed: Here’s a Better Way

If you’re a CEO/President/COO or Head of HR, you’ve been partially mis-lead with the non-stop advice on how to retain employees. You know all about The Great Resignation and Quiet Quitting. You’ve read Wall Street Journal’s “research” (hearsay) that suggests you suck as a leader – “78% of people quit because they dislike their manager.” You’re not “every manager” but as CEO those “every managers” report to you, so you’re to blame. You raised pay to keep people while being scolded, “Raising pay will not convert employees who don’t like you or your organization “culture” into loyal, motivated team players.”

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From the Desk of Brad Smart: Are Traditional or ‘Virtuoso’ Teams Best?

Harvard Business Review published a widely read and controversial article based on a study of 20 leading companies. The article highlights how success was snatched from the jaws of defeat with geniuses stimulating competition on their teams for creative “ideas,” not just the performance of tasks like producing results.

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From the Desk of Brad Smart: How a CEO Successfully Navigated Through Incredibly Tough Mental Health Challenges

Topgrading supporter and Scaling Up coach, Kevin Lawrence, sent us an interview he did with a CEO who, with pandemic challenges mounting, discussed how he was able to transition through the lowest of mental health lows successfully. 

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From the Desk of Brad Smart: Are Your Interviews as Revealing as Speed Dates?

If you’re new to Topgrading, this blog will give you a hint that will make all of your hiring interviews the most revealing and honest of your career. Topgrading’s “secret” takes seconds to use and you’ll immediately know that the interviewee is being real, authentic and is not ‘BS’ing you.’ It’s like playing the roulette wheel and knowing in advance if the ball will land on red, black, or green.

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From the Desk of Brad Smart: Where Your Talent Methods Rank (Take the Quiz)

As the year progresses, it’s time to assess what shape you are in with the #1 factor that will account for how successful you’ll be … your talent!

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From the Desk of Brad Smart: You Cannot Believe Resumes

Are you mis-hiring people because they “fooled you?” Of course you have. Years ago we all thought that social media profiles (Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.) would force people to NOT exaggerate their successes and hide failures when job hunting. Guess that didn’t work! We all know now that exaggerations are extreme. As you’ve read, people become anxious and depressed when they “see” that their life is not as perfect as everyone else’s.

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From the Desk of Brad Smart: How To Recruit A Players When They Are Hard to Find

You want to hire high performers, A Players, right? But what can you do if: Seven million Americans capable of working are choosing not to work, Help Wanted signs everywhere, Quiet Quitting is almost an epidemic, Studies show that most workers don’t like their job, and Chances are you raised pay to stop employees from […]

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From the Desk of Brad Smart: How HR Can Sell Ideas to CEOs

In a recent blog, we addressed the reality that Human Resources is usually the lowest paid, under-respected function that reports to CEOs, and suggested that improving Quality of Hire is the fastest path toward accelerating a career in HR. In this blog I share my personal conclusions about how to best “sell” CEOs on anything […]

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