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					                                          T H E A DVA N TAGE
                                                  Society of Design Administration
                                                                   San Diego “America’s Finest City” Chapter

                               October 2 0 0 1                                                            Volume 2, Issue 4

                                   The Society of Design Administration (SDA), an affiliate of
                                   the American Institute of Architects, is a national organization
EXCHANGE OF IDEAS AND              with chapters throughout the United States and an affiliated
TO EDUCATE ITS MEMBERS             organization in Canada.
         IN THE
    ADMINISTRATION.                The San Diego Chapter meets monthly to provide networking
                                   and educational seminars.
 San Diego Chapter
 P. O. Box 262436
 San Diego, CA 92196
 858-578-5863                                     15 for 12 Membership Drive*
                                                             Expires October 31, 2001
                                *See inside for more details!
MARK YOUR                       Helpful Tips:
                                The Windows logo key, located in the bottom row of most computer key-
Program Meetings                boards is a little-used treasure. Don't ignore it. It is a shortcut anchor for
                                the following commands:
are the third Monday            (Note: Some key combinations only work in Windows XP)
of the month.
                                Key Combo                                  Result
22    Monthly Program                                      Display the Start menu
25 SDA Board Meeting
                                           +D              Minimize or restore all windows
14   CANSTRUCTION                          +E              Display Windows Explorer
17   CANSTRUCTION                          + CTRL + F       Display Search for computer
     Gala Event
                                           + F1            Display Help and Support Center
14   Holiday Party & Officer               +R               Display Run dialog box
                                           + Break          Display System Properties dialog box
All members are
    encouraged to                          + Shift + M     Undo minimize all windows
       attend all events!
                                           +L              Lock the workstation

                                           +U              Open Utility Manager
THE ADVANTAGE                                                                                                           Page 2

      TABLE OF
                              MEETING RECAPS:                                   May Program Meeting:
                                                                                Depression in the Work Place
                                                                                Dr. Susan Jasin, Ph.D.
      CONTENTS                June Program Meeting:
                              Financials form the Principals Point of           Susan Jasin, Ph.D. has been a consultant to
Helpful Tips ……….. 1          View                                              industry for over 25 years. After receiving a
                              Mark Clements                                     doctorate from Temple University she com-
                                                                                pleted postdoctoral training in organization
MS Open License...... 1       Mark Clements of AES gave us a unique
                              insight into financials from the princi-          development. Since then she has worked
                              pal’s point of view. If you needed some           with varied industries including high tech,
Meeting Recaps…….. 2          feed back on your financials, budgeting,          manufacturing, aerospace, architecture,
                              and / or forecasting, this was the meeting        healthcare, and finance. Susan enjoys work-
Chapter News………. 2            for you! Do you have financials down              ing with small as well and medium and large
                              pat, but need some help with forecasting?         sized companies including many Fortune
                              Mark pointed us in the right direction!           500 companies: Hewlett Packard, Sun Mi-
SDA Member Info….. 3          Thanks Mark for all of your support for
                                                                                crosystems, Charles Schwab, American Air-
                              SDA! We hope your firm has a beautiful
                              ‘aquatic’ entry in CANSTRUCTION!
                                                                                lines, Lockheed Martin, Toro Irrigation and
Free Lunch?? …..….... 3                                                         General Atomics.

Member List ……....        3

SDA Contacts ……… 4                           NEWS FLASH…..
Harassment ……….           4
                               Chapter News:
Sponsors ………..            5
Business Cards of the          •    CANstruction is coming to San Diego! For information on
Future ....………….. 6                 sponsorship or volunteer opportunities, contact Stormie Petoscia
                                    at 858-566-0626
????......                7    •    Visit us at www.SDAsandiego.com
????? …..                 7
                               Other SDA News:
Strategic Interviewing 8       • 15 for 12 Membership Expires October 31, 2001

                                                              For information on
CANSTRUCTION …. 9                                             CANstruction—
                                                              Call Kristie Cadigan, SDA
Job Bank…………... 11                                            at (858) 673-5845 or visit:
Upcoming Meetings     12                                      canstruction.htm

"We should not let our               Advertising Space Available
fears hold us back from
pursuing our
                                           YOUR AD HERE!
--John F. Kennedy
                                          For details contact:
                                      Julie King at 619-239-9292
THE ADVANTAGE                                                                                                              Page 3
                                                                                                       San Diego Chapter
                                                                                                        Member Roster:
                           SDA MEMBER INFORMATION
                                                                                                  Cindy Austin, SDA
                                                                                                  Burkett & Wong
                   KRISTIE CADIGAN
           SDA SAN DIEGO CHAPTER PRESIDENT                                                        Gina Balourdas, SDA
                                                                                                  The Arcadia Group
                    GETS MARRIED!
                                                                                                  Robin Battaglia, SDA
    On July 7th Kristie Cadigan married Aaron Bevacqua at the Marina Village at                   Turpit & Potter Architect, Inc.
    Mission Bay. Please join us in congratulating Mr. And Mrs. Aaron Bevacqua!                    Bruce Bechard, SDA
                                                                                                  Bechard Long & Assoc.

                                                                                                  Kristie Bevacqua, SDA
                                                                                                  Schirmer Engineering Corp.

                                                                                                  Betty Connell, SDA/C
                                                                                                  Island Architects

                                                                                                  Kristine Custodio, SDA
      Who Says There’s No Such Thing as a Free Lunch?                                             Delorenzo, Inc.

As reported previously in Labor Law Extra, California employers may be penalized if they          Chelsey Cutter, SDA
don’t provide legally required meal and rest periods for employees. An employer who doesn’t       Geotechnics Inc.
provide a required meal or rest period must pay the employee an extra hour’s pay for the day
in addition to paying for all time actually worked, including the time the employee worked dur-   Sonja Felker, SDA
                                                                                                  AIA San Diego Chapter
ing the missed meal or rest break.
                                                                                                  Diane Keppel, SDA
To avoid this new penalty, here are answers to some of the most common questions employ-
ers ask about meal and rest breaks:
                                                                                                  Julie M. King, SDA
WHAT IS THE CALIFORNIA MEAL BREAK LAW?                                                            Robbins Jorgensen
Employees are entitled to at least one half hour (unpaid) meal break for every work period of     Christopher
more than five hours. However, if an employee works less than six hours in a day, the em-
ployee may agree to waive the meal break.                                                         Jolinda Kramer, SDA
                                                                                                  Cavignac & Associates
Generally, California law does not permit an employee to waive his/her right to a meal break      Lyla Larson, SDA
simply because of a busy schedule. In rare instances, the law permits an "on duty" paid meal      Altevers & Associates
period when the nature of the employee’s work prevents that employee from being relieved of
all duty. In such cases, the employee must agree in writing to an on-duty meal period.            Colleen McLaughlin, SDA
                                                                                                  Bennet & Smith Architects
Ten-minute paid rest periods must be provided as follows:                                         Lisa Mora, SDA
                                                                                                  Stichler Design Group
0 - 3.5 hours of work = 0 rest periods
3.5 - 6.0 hours of work = 1 rest period                                                           Marianne Myers, SDA
6.0 - 10.0 hours of work = 2 rest periods                                                         Nowak Muelmester
10.0 - 14.0 hours of work = 3 rest periods
                                                                                                  Stormie Petoscia, SDA
14.0 - 18.0 hours of work = 4 rest periods                                                        FLC Engineers
BREAK TIME?                                                                                       Maple Dell McClelland
No. Rest periods must be in the middle of each work period, except in unusual circum-
stances where doing so is impractical because of the employee’s job.                              Lara Waddell, SDA
                                                                                                  Salerno Livingston
Meal and rest break requirements are in sections 11 and 12 of California’s Wage Orders,           Debra Winter, SDA
which can be viewed and downloaded from HRCalifornia.com at http://www.hrcalifornia.com/          Van Dyke, LLP
THE ADVANTAGE                                                                                                            Page 4

                                         Quick Action Prevents Harassment Lawsuit
                                   A recent federal Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals case provides an excellent example of
                                   how an employer’s prompt and proper response to complaints of harassment can pre-
                                   vent a potentially costly lawsuit from going to trial.

                                   During his 12 years of employment at Valmont Industries in Nebraska, Charles Robin-
                                   son reported several instances of unwelcome, racially motivated harassment. In one
                                   incident, one of Robinson’s coworkers showed Robinson a news article about the as-
                                   sault of a Haitian immigrant by New York City police officers. The coworker then bran-
                                   dished a broom handle emblazoned with the phrase "Haitian Death Stick" saying, "This
TO CONTACT US:                     is what they need to keep them in line." Valmont immediately imposed a three-day sus-
                                   pension against the coworker and required the entire department to attend diversity
Kristie Bevacqua, SDA              training within two weeks.
Schirmer Engineering
11770 Bernardo Plaza Court,        Then, when someone left a clothesline tied in the shape of a noose in Robinson’s
                                   locker, Valmont promptly began an investigation by questioning employees and en-
San Diego, CA 92128
(858) 673-5845                     couraging any witnesses to come forward with information about the incident. When no
Fax: (858) 673-5849                witnesses came forward, Valmont installed a surveillance camera in the locker room
kcadigan@schirmerengineering.com   hoping to identify the culprit. (California employers are prohibited from taping employ-
SECRETARY &                        ees in locker rooms unless authorized by a court order.)
Lisa Mora, SDA                     When another Valmont employee described a black Labrador dog as an "African-
Stichler Design Group              American Labrador” in front of Robinson, Valmont required the employee to apologize
9655 Granite Ridge Dr #400
San Diego, CA 92123                to Robinson. Valmont placed a written warning in the employee's record, indicating
(858) 565-4440                     that further conduct of this type could result in termination.
Fax: (858) 569-3433
                                   Eventually Robinson sued Valmont for subjecting him to a racially hostile work environ-
DIRECTOR:                          ment in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Both the lower court and
Sher Prince, SDA                   the Eighth District Court of Appeal refused to allow Robinson to go to trial on his
(619) 698-8742                     claims, saying that Valmont responded promptly and adequately to each report of har-
Fax: (619) 462-3008
                                   assment. (Robinson v. Valmont Industries, No. 99-4198, January 31, 2001)

TREASURER &                        WHAT SHOULD YOU DO?
ADVANTAGE EDITOR:                  1. While the media may focus on sexual harassment, keep in mind that harassment on
Julie King, SDA
Robbins Jorgensen Christopher
                                   the basis of any of the classes protected by law is illegal. In California, protected
660 Ninth Avenue, Suite 200        classes include: race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disabil-
San Diego, CA 92101                ity, mental disability, medical condition, marital status, sex, age and sexual orientation.
(619) 239-9292
Fax: (619) 239-9288
jking@rjcarch.com                  2. Respond promptly to any report of illegal harassment, and thoroughly document
                                   your actions. When assessing the reasonableness of an employer's remedial actions,
NATIONAL SECRETARY &               a court is likely to consider the amount of time that elapsed between the notice of the
MEMBERSHIP CHAIR:                  harassment and the remedial measures taken.
Betty Connell, SDA/C
Island Architects
7632 Herschel Avenue               More information about preventing harassment claims is included in the California
La Jolla, CA 92037                 Chamber’s Complete Sexual Harassment Compliance Kit at http://www.
(858) 459-9291
                                   calchamberstore.com/calchamber/index2.cfm?section=prod&ID=70. While geared to-
Fax: (858) 456-0351
bconnell@ilndarch.com              wards sexual harassment, the investigation checklists and information sheets included
                                   in the Kit can be used for investigating any type of harassment.

  A wise man will
    make more                                             Advertising Space Available
 opportunities than                                            YOUR AD HERE!
     he finds.
                                                              For details contact:
    -- Francis Bacon                                      Julie King at 619-239-9292
THE ADVANTAGE                                                     Page 5

 Advertising Space

                     Support the San Diego Chapter:
      For details     SDA Baseball Caps on Sale Now!
       contact:       Black & Tan, Denim, and Peach &
     Julie King at        Cream—Only $15 each!
     619-239-9292     Visit: www.sdasandiego.com for order form
                       Or email: Treasurer@sdasandiego.com
THE ADVANTAGE                                                                                                        Page 6

Advertising Space                                      The Business Card of the Future?
                                Looking for an innovative marketing technique? Try an electronic, or CD-
    Available                   business card.

                                When Kevin Tolsma, a financial consultant at the Bellevue, Calif.-based asset manage-
 YOUR AD                        ment firm, Linsco Private Ledger, wanted to explore new ways of marketing his busi-
                                ness, he didn't turn to the newspaper or the yellow pages. Tolsma turned to an even
  HERE!                         newer technology to attract potential new customers: electronic business cards. The
                                size of a standard business card with rounded edges, these mini CD-ROMs have
  For details contact:          graphics on the card's exterior and can be played in any standard CD-ROM drive. With
     Julie King at              memory capacities ranging from 40 to 100 megabytes and above, these cards serve as
     619-239-9292               an "electronic brochure," incorporating video, PowerPoint presentations and other mes-
                                sages. The cards can even provide a link to your company's Web site. Prices vary from
                                around $3 to about $1 for 5,000 or more depending on the size of the quantities or-
                                dered. Programming costs are additional.
Why do we say that
people who get hung up          Build Referrals
on minor arguments are          Convinced the novelty would attract customers, Tolsma mailed 180 cards to potential
"quibbling?"                    clients, providing two to each person and encouraging them to pass them on. His in-
                                stincts were right. Not only did referrals from the mailing pay for the cost of the cards,
You'll never guess what         he also received about 30 hits on his Web site within a week. Previously, the company
profession is the source        Web site received a total of only five hits. While not a huge number, it represents a di-
of this word. Let's see, its    rect response of more than 16%. Other users of e-cards have seen even bigger re-
members certainly quib-         sults. Bellevue, Wash.-based attorney Steve Lingenbrink says he received nearly
ble over minor arguments.       10,000 hits a month—compared to a previous monthly average of 800 hits—after he
They often scribble on          was featured on an e-card manufacturer's demo cards. And Tim Harless, founding
large leg... uh, yellow         principal of TD Northwest, a roofing and waterproofing business based in Tigard, Ore.,
pads. And they positively       handed out the cards at an industry banquet. "I fully intend to increase my company's
dribble at the mouth over       revenues 25% to 50% just by using these cards," he says. "I think this is the most eco-
the potential for many bill-    nomical way of advertising that my company has come up with in 10 years. It gives me
able hours.                     the opportunity to do a [virtual] one-on-one presentation with a prospective client."
Yes, it's our friends the       Multi-Purpose Functions The cards have other uses as well.
lawyers. So, how do we             • Quixtar, the online component for Amway—the Ada, Mich.-based direct-to-
get from them to the word              consumer distributor—actually earns money with the cards. It requires its inde-
"quibble?" It's from the               pendent sales reps to purchase the CDs, which are loaded with a sales train-
Latin, "quibis," a form of             ing program, says Mike Shead, a project manager at Torrance, Calif.-based e-
the word "qui," or "who."              card manufacturer SysTECH.
Quibis is the equivalent of
"party of the first part." So       •   Some customers use their cards as annual reports or electronic catalogs—
to quibble, in other words,             which can save companies money on postage and printing costs, according to
is to talk like, and there-             Troy Lerner, an interactive media consultant at Denver-based i-MediaCard.
fore to act like he or she              Catalog CDs can be configured to link to a company's Web site to obtain the
whom you should usually                 most up-to-date prices.
try to avoid at all costs.
And "all" is what it will
                                    •   The mini-CDs have also been used as tickets to special events such as con-
probably cost you if you
                                        certs—offering links to merchandise and a few of the artist's recorded songs.
                                Cards are available in different shapes—one SysTECH client, Century 21 real estate
                                agent Shane Braudo, ordered his in the shape of a house. According to Lerner of i-
                                MediaCard, users need to be wary of any CDs that don't sit properly in the CD drive.
                                The first electronic business cards, used mainly in Europe, had square edges. Some of
                                the cards flew out of CD drives and destroyed users' computers—making them a not-
                                so-effective marketing tool.
                                While most e-card customers appear happy with their results, they also warn that the
                                very thing they believe makes the cards such a powerful marketing tool—the interest
                                sparked by their novelty—will likely wear off within a few years. Right now, "it's the
                                business card of the future," Harless says.
THE ADVANTAGE                                                                                                               Page 7

    Competency Modeling & Strategic Interviewing for Selection Success

 By: Susan E. Jasin, Ph.D.

 With unemployment rates are at an all time low, finding, hiring and retaining class A
 employees, whether they are managers, engineers or bakers, is an important chal-
 lenge. To complicate matters further, jobs today are more and more complex, requiring
 a greater number of skills that further reduces the pool of qualified applicants and can
 make finding the “right one” more difficult and frustrating.

                             Flaws in Traditional Selection Methods

 Traditional selection methods have often fallen short. Two false assumptions promote
 1) Competency can be successfully inferred from past positions and 2) interviewing is
 basically an easy process. When these two beliefs are in place, resumes are assumed
 to establish the applicant’s competencies. If an applicant lists key successes, it is be-
 lieved that he/she can apply those same methods to the present business challenges.
 For example, a production trainer from a top automobile factory is assumed to have the
 skills necessary to be director of operations at a commercial bakery. Why not? Manu-
 facturing is manufacturing whether its SUV’s or croissants, right? But, in this particular
 example of a common situation for hiring managers or owners: A) Do we really know
 that that person was all that competent at the auto plant or just “rode it out” for a num-
 ber of years? B) Would lack of bakery product and industry knowledge be a significant
 barrier to success? C) Do production strategies employed at the auto factory transfer to
 the bakery? D) Is the mentality and outlook of one set of line employees comparable to
 the other or could cultural and transformations differences affect his success? E) Aside
 from industry specific product and technical skills, how effective is this candidate’s man-
 agement abilities?

 Second to competency considerations, interviewing has been taken rather casually, of-              Susan Jasin, Ph.D. has been
 ten using generalized open-ended questions. Formats commonly include items like,                   a consultant to industry for
 “Tell me a bit about yourself” and “Why do you want this job?. A decision derived from             over 25 years. After receiv-
 these broad and largely irrelevant questions ends up being made on “gut reactions” and             ing a doctorate from Temple
 the applicant social skills and/or ability to read the interviewer follows.                        University she completed
                                                                                                    postdoctoral training in or-
 A third complication in traditional selection is that many applicants do not successfully          ganization development.
 portray their skills and capabilities in the interview process, particularly within the for-       Since then she has worked
 mats mentioned above. Interviewers may either under- or over-rate a candidate’s skills             with varied industries in-
 based on their interview. For jobs that require visual, spatial, mathematical or other             cluding high tech, manufac-
 non-verbal skills, the best candidate may be the one weakest in verbal skills who does-            turing, aerospace, architec-
 n’t present well in the interview. Conversely the applicant who “comes across” best and            ture, healthcare, and finance.
 is most convincing, may, in fact, may have the weakest technical skills necessary for              Susan enjoys working with
 success in the job. In fact, verbal skills and technical abilities are more often than not         small as well and medium
 inversely related. Often, “success” in a traditional interview may be poorly related to job        and large sized companies
 performance.                                                                                       including many Fortune 500
                                                                                                    companies: Hewlett Pack-
 In sum, using appearances, whether it is the resume or the candidates presentation in              ard, Sun Microsystems,
 the interview puts HR on a slippery slope and is often the quickest route to “false                Charles Schwab, American
 positives” (i.e. people who “look” like a good fit but end up being hiring errors). Inter-         Airlines, Lockheed Martin,
 estingly, even if a good fit is established, “womb to tomb” commitment is long gone. In            Toro Irrigation and General
 some industries turnover rates are as high as 75%, and costs to replace can be star-               Atomics

 The best solution, of course, lies in selecting the “true positive” or right person the first
                                                                            (Continued on page 8)
THE ADVANTAGE                                                                                                              Page 8

                                 (Continued from page 7)
                                 time, then establishing a mutually satisfying or symbiotic relationship where both em-
                                 ployer and employee get what they want on an ongoing and hopefully long-term basis.
                                 “Intellectual Equity: Your Company’s Greatest Corporate Asset” (Jasin & Philips,2001)
                                 provides a complete model for attracting, developing, retaining and leveraging the talent
                                 of employees. It is the purpose of this article to look more closely at selection methods
                                 and present techniques to “do it right the first time”. The best approaches to finding the
                                 right person for the right job the first time, involves a carefully structured process that
                                 provides clear, accurate expectations, a focused and effective interviewing process and
                                 multiple data points to verify goodness of fit between applicant, job, and corporate cul-

                                 In their excellent book Strategic Interviewing: How to Hire Good People (University of
2001 Committee                   Michigan Business School of Management Series, Jossey Bass, San Francisco, 2001)
Chairs & Members:                Richard Camp, Mary E. Vielhaber and Jack L. Simonetti detail 6 steps for a successful
                                 selection process using strategic interviewing. The heart of their method involves 2 im-
CANstruction:                    portant tasks. The first is creating clearly defined job expectations. These expectations
Stormie Petoscia—Co-Chair        include a set of concrete job goals, quantified deliverables, as well as the skill compe-
Julie King—Co-Chair              tencies necessary to create success. The second is a selection process including inter-
Betty Connell                    viewing based on a set of strategic questions that tap those competencies.
Sher Prince
Susan Sanders                                                      Competency Modeling
Angela O’Neil
Lisa Mora                        In order to create a delineation of competencies, the authors suggest interviewing in-
Rex Rogosch                      cumbents, colleagues and if possible past employees in the position to identify both
Rita Moore                       skills associated with successes and with failures to overcoming barriers to producing
                                 results. “Performance barrier” is a key concept that refers to inherent challenges to
Newsletter:                      producing results in each position under consideration. These may include resource
Julie King, Chair                constraints, time pressure, shifting market needs, characteristics of the workforce like
Lisa Mora                        cultural differences, current level of technical sophistication, language difficulties, etc.

Accommodations:                  Competency requirements for a given job include those specific skills that have
Open—Chair                       proven necessary to overcoming the job barriers. They should be written with active
Julie King                       verbs like “solves generates proposes, originates” rather than vagaries including “ be-
                                 lieve, understand, be familiar with”. An example of a barrier could be “change order
Programs:                        amounts leading to compressed productivity demands”. A related competency in a
Kristie Cadigan, Chair           given organization might included “securing resources from other departments to com-
Betty Connell                    plete an order on time” or “making contingency plans with upper management when
Sher Prince                      output cannot be guaranteed” or even “proactively generating contingency plans in ad-
Lisa Mora                        vance”.

If you are interested in serv-   Clear and concrete competency requirements have a number of advantages:
ing on one of our commit-                1. When distributed to applicants prior to interviewing, they provide a means for
tees, please contact Kristie             realistic job previewing so that unqualified candidates may select themselves
Cadigan at (858) 673-5845.               out.
                                         2. Help set consistent selection criteria for single or multiple interviewers.
                                         3. Provide a base for establishing a development plan for new hires up front.
                                         4. Enable more effective delegation and better performance appraisals.
                                         5. When combined with others, create data pools to enhance identification of
                                         training needs.
  “If you can't accept
 losing, you can't win."         The second foundation for successful selection includes, but should not be limited to,
                                    strategic interviewing. All selection should be based on “multiple data points”. This
                                    means that 3 or more sources of information should be considered before making
 --Vince Lombardi
                                    any selection decision. These valid sources of input include: Past job experience,
                                    Educational and training history, Results form psychological testing, Work
                                    samples, Language and cultural fit*, Results from strategic interviewing.
                                                                                                             (Continued on page 10)
THE ADVANTAGE                                                                                                   Page 9

                                                                           Of Design
CANSTRUCTION ®                                                                  An Affiliate of the American
                                                                                   Institute of Architects

               14-17, 2001
                                                              Entry Form

Hotel Del Coronado                 FIRM NAME

For More Information               ADDRESS                               CITY                  STATE           ZIP
Stormie Petoscia at                PHONE                                 FAX
                                   TEAM CAPTAIN                          EMAIL

                                   AIA / SDA Member                      AMOUNT ENCLOSED

                                   Please fill out this form (one per team), include your check for the
                                   entry fee made payable to SDA San Diego Chapter and send to:
                                        Attn: CANSTRUCTION
                                        SDA San Diego
                                        PO Box 262436
                                        San Diego, CA 92196

                                   Entrants are responsible for purchasing or collecting all canned goods used
                                   in their CANSTRUCTION. Further details to come later during the team meet-


                                   Carrier Johnson
                                   Flores Lund Consultants
                                   Island Architects
                                   Maple Dell McClelland Architects
                                   Neyenesch Printers, Inc
                                   Robbins Jorgensen Christopher
Society of Design Administration
                                   Schirmer Engineering
PO Box 262436                      Stichler Design Group
San Diego, CA 92196-2436           Top of the Line Printing & Graphics Service
Phone: 858-578-5863
Fax: 858-578-5863
Email: president@SDAsandiego.com
THE ADVANTAGE                                                                                                      Page 1 0

                              (Continued from page 8)

                              * A senior colleague maintains that candidates from Fortune 500 or other very large
                              corporations are poor fits for smaller companies that have a different modus oper-

                              The last item, behaviorally based interviewing questions, focus largely on how an
                              applicant has addressed factors similar to the barriers defined for the position in the
                              “competency requirements” and are summarized as follows:

                              1. Ask for description of past experience with a job barrier:
                              • “Tell me about a time when you had tasks of equal importance and too little time
                                 to complete them.”
"If you have a great          •   “Tell me about a time when you disagreed with your boss on handling an impor-
ambition, take as big a          tant issue.”
step as possible in the       • “Tell me about a time when you had to influence even though you had no author-
direction of fulfilling it.      ity.”
The step may only be a        2. Ask how past behavior relates to performance expectations:
tiny one, but trust that      • “Give me some examples of how your work experience qualifies you for this po-
it may be the largest            sition.
one possible for now."        • “Describe a time when you applied your education or knowledge learned from a
                                 different job to improve a new situation. This could be in your job or another part
--Mildred McAfee                 of your life.”

                              3. Ask for descriptions of accomplishments:
                              • ”Tell me about an opportunity you found to generate cost savings in your produc-
                                 tion department”.
                              • “Tell me about a time when you were able to involve others in developing proc-
                                 ess improvements.”

                              Before asking these questions of any candidate, the HR professional or sole proprie-
                              tor should identify answers that demonstrate candidate’s ability to meet performance
                              expectations. The reader is admonished to set objective standards in advance rather
                              than selecting the candidate with the best answers. Doing so risks a “false positive”
                              such that the new hire is unqualified for the position, just less unqualified than the
                              other applicants. Further it is advisable to develop
                              samples of both effective and ineffective answers to each question and make them
                              as behaviorally specific as possible to further clarify standards.

                              Naturally it is also important to avoid interview topics forbidden by law to prevent dis-
                              crimination complaints. This includes omitting references to marital status, ages of
                              children, pregnancy or plans for pregnancy. date of birth or age, birthplace ancestry
                              or native tongue. Although it is illegal to ask if a candidate has been arrested, it is
                              acceptable to ask and check if that person has ever been convicted of a felony. An-
                              other useful data point!
 "The way you overcome
 shyness is to become so                                        Procedural Caveat
 wrapped up in some-
 thing that you forget to     Carefully constructed questions and competencies cannot insure success in selec-
                              tion if other flaws operate. They include fatigue on part of interviewer or interviewee,
 be afraid."                  misinterpretation, misunderstanding of question, distractions, and/or poorly struc-
                              tured or sequenced interviews. In order to minimize these sources of contamination:
 --Lady Bird Johnson          1. Use an written interview guide to assure that all candidate will be asked the
                                   same questions and same format
                                                                                                     (Continued on page 11)
THE ADVANTAGE                                                                                                        Page 1 1

     Advertising Space Available                                                                       Job Bank
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 (Continued from page 10)                                                                              Sher Prince
 2. Preview the interview process for the candidate and limit small talk
 3. Probe to gather more complete behavioral data how did you do it? “Why did you                      or email her at
    do it that way?” “What were the results of your efforts how did the organization             director@sdasandiego.com
    benefit?” “If you had it to do over, how would you do it differently?” “ How did you
    measure your effectiveness?”                                                                 2001 Committee Chairs
 4. Probe “red flag” or responses that lead to a conclusion that candidate behaved               & Members:
 5. Suspend judgement during the interview and take objective notes                              CANstruction:
                                                                                                 Stormie Petoscia
      Advantages of a Carefully Designed and Implemented Selection Process                       Betty Connell
                                                                                                 Sher Prince
 Hiring “false positives” is costly from an emotional, as well as organizational and finan-      Julie King
 cial perspective. An unproductive worker in a key position can make costly errors of            Angela O’Neil
 commission and omission. In addition a poor performer can disrupt and impair team               Lisa Mora
 functioning and create a negative ripple effect throughout the department and/or com-           Rex Rogosch
 pany. Using the process described above including concretely defined deliverables,              Rita Moore
 thoughtful competency modeling and strategic interviewing is an investment that pays
 off making it well worth the time and resources invested.                                       Newsletter:
                                                                                                 Julie King, Chair
 A less obvious additional payoff is that most all candidates exposed to this type of            Lisa Mora
 carefully orchestrated interview will be impressed with the method and care taken with
 them and thus more likely to accept a position if offered. Those that are not offered           Accommodations:
 the job are likely to carry a positive messages out into the workforce that will promote        Open—Chair
 your good name.. Hopefully they will say of your company, “They really have their act           Julie King
                                        Conclusion                                               Kristie Cadigan, Chair
                                                                                                 Betty Connell
 In sum, successful selection is less intuitive than we would like to believe. In reality, it    Sher Prince
 takes hours of planning, thoughtful work, and careful application and documentation.            Lisa Mora
 Although it may be tempting to blame the new hire that doesn’t work out for their in-
 competence, misrepresentation, lack of drive, low level of commitment or “personality           If you are interested in
 problems”, it is the employer who ends of “holding the bag” and bearing the expense             serving on one of our
 of hiring errors. Rather than leaving proper selection up to fate, chance or “good gut          committees, please con-
 reactions”, companies are better served by applying the more reliable methods de-               tact Kristie Cadigan at
 scribed in this article to “get it right the first time”. By staffing with Class A managers     (858) 673-5845.
 and employees your organization is equipped to realize its dream.

 Editor in Chief:              Contributing Editor:                  Reporters:
 Julie M. King, SDA               Lisa Mora, SDA                     Kristie Cadigan, SDA
                                                                     Sher Prince, SDA
                                                                     Betty Connell, SDA/C
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