- Apr 28, 2007
I dunno, I would never give someone a good reference if they didn't deserve it, that would be a bad reflection on me. I always say to the people I teach that they should ask the permission of the person they want to include as a referee, which gives that person the chance to refuse (I have refused one or two).While I have never worked in a "fire the bottom 10% culture" in my 17 years in the corporate world I would say more than 10% of the people I worked with were fired or let go and I did my share of this firing. In most cases these people were basically in the wrong job, they were not up to it and they were fired based on performance; another group were either lazy or dishonest; and another group just didn't seem to be able to fit into the 9-5, 39 hour week. It never ceased to amaze me how many people out there are incapable of work or clung to jobs they were not able to do. We tried to be as humane as we could with training and time but in some cases you knew from day 1 it wasn't going to work out. The interview process is seriously flawed at the best of times and most people embelish their abilities while references are not worth the paper they are written on.
When looking at a reference you look for words like - Punctual, hardworking, willing to learn new facets of work, prepared to stay back if an important job is to be completed, cheerful, had a good working relationship with co-workers and clients. If some of these are missing, ask why at the interview.