Episode 161: Jeannette Seibly – The Hiring Triangle: Assessments, Interviews, and Due Diligence

Listen on:


In this engaging episode of the Builders Podcast, host Matt welcomes Jeannette Sibly, an expert in leadership coaching and talent advising. With decades of experience and a hands-on approach to driving tangible business results, Jeannette shares insights from the trenches that are particularly relevant to small and medium-sized business leaders.

Jeannette discusses the nuances of hiring, the transformative power of effective coaching, and the common pitfalls that companies face in the employment process. From the importance of knowing who you're hiring to the critical role of job fit in an employee's success, Jeannette emphasizes the high cost of intuition-based hiring and the substantial benefits of a structured, data-driven approach.

Listeners are provided with a wealth of knowledge, including actionable strategies for improving hiring processes and optimizing team performance. Jeannette's focus on people challenges and her tools for understanding the core of an individual make this episode a must-listen for any business owner or manager looking to refine their hiring and management practices.

Key Takeaways:

  • Hiring the right people is less expensive than training and exiting, but doing it poorly can be costly and detrimental to your business.
  • Jeannette advocates for a balanced hiring approach, with one-third of the decision based on interviews, one-third on vetted assessments, and one-third on thorough due diligence.
  • Proper assessments are vital for determining job fit; legitimate assessments should have technical manuals, high validity and reliability, and account for distortion.
  • Employers must understand that job fit is the number one indicator of job success, and not all capable job applicants will necessarily fit the job.
  • Leadership and hiring managers should be equipped with the right questions and tools to discern between an interviewee's rehearsed responses and their true potential and fit for the role.

Jeannette Seibly

Jeannette Seibly is a Talent Advisor/Leadership Results Coac

Jeannette Seibly is a Talent Advisor/Leadership Results Coach with over 31 years of experience guiding leaders and bosses to improve their hiring, coaching, and managing practices and produce amazing results! And yes, achieving business success always starts with having the right people in the right jobs! She has been an Authorized PXT Select Partner for over 31 years. 


  • Introduction: The Hiring Triangle and Its Importance
    • The evolution of hiring practices
    • Introduction to the Hiring Triangle: Assessments, Interviews, and Due Diligence
  • Jeanette Sibly's Journey
    • Transition from HR to leadership coaching
    • Over 40 years of experience in talent development
  • The Significance of Job Fit
    • Defining job fit and its impact on organizational success
    • The Harvard Business Review study on job fit as the number one indicator of job success
  • Assessments: The First Corner of the Triangle
    • The role of assessments in hiring and development
    • Criteria for selecting the right assessments
    • Avoiding common pitfalls in assessment use
  • Interviews: The Second Corner of the Triangle
    • Structuring interviews to gauge true capabilities
    • Beyond intuitive hiring: Asking the right questions
    • The importance of focusing on job-related inquiries
  • Due Diligence: The Third Corner of the Triangle
    • Comprehensive background checks and their significance
    • Using third-party services for verification
    • The value of references and how to utilize them effectively
  • Integrating the Hiring Triangle for Job Fit
    • Balancing assessments, interviews, and due diligence
    • Case studies on the effectiveness of the Hiring Triangle
    • Adapting the triangle to different industries and roles
  • Beyond Hiring: Developing Talent and Nurturing Growth
    • The role of continuous assessment in employee development
    • Coaching strategies for talent development
    • The impact of job fit on long-term employee engagement and performance
  • Conclusion: Key Takeaways and Next Steps
    • Summarizing the Hiring Triangle's impact on job fit and organizational success
    • How to connect with Jeanette Sibly for further insights

Click to See Episode Chapters and Timestamp

0:00:17Matt introduces the episode and asks for support
0:00:40Matt welcomes Jeanette Sibly to the show
0:03:11Jeanette shares her background in HR and coaching
0:05:47Jeanette discusses the importance of coaching for small businesses
0:08:43Matt and Jeanette talk about the challenges of coaching in companies
0:10:20Jeanette highlights the importance of self-awareness and finding the right coach
0:12:23Jeanette shares a story about a coaching experience with a client
0:13:16The impact of intuitive hiring and the importance of job fit
0:14:26The three areas that leaders can directly impact: hiring, training, and letting go
0:14:58The prevalence of intuitive hiring and the need for job-related questions
0:16:03The significance of using qualified assessments in the hiring process
0:17:18The importance of delving into a candidate's actual experience
0:18:14The limitations of relying solely on interviews and the value of due diligence
0:19:11The focus on likability in hiring and the need for job fit
0:20:25The Harvard Business Review study on job fit as the top indicator of success
0:21:01The example of hiring salespeople and the importance of assessing job fit
0:22:33The significance of conducting thorough due diligence, including reference checks
0:23:14The impact of hiring the wrong customer service person on a company
0:24:13The need for leaders to address and resolve issues with employees
0:25:30The importance of multitasking and paying attention in customer service roles
0:26:41The value of skill testing in the hiring process
0:27:11Degree verification and background checks
0:28:17Importance of doing a US-based background check
0:30:00Adapting the job to fit the employee
0:31:08Using the right assessments for selection
0:33:39Addressing issues with job expectations
0:35:55The misconception of fast thinking as the right fit
0:37:50Dealing with employees who are not the right fit
0:38:38Importance of using reliable assessments for hiring
0:40:12Jeannette discusses how tools can be distorted and manipulated in the hiring process.
0:41:13Jeannette explains the importance of using scientifically and legally based assessments in the hiring process.
0:43:00Jeannette shares a story about the consequences of not properly evaluating assessment distortion.
0:44:20Matt asks about the process of filling out assessments and potential interviewee deception.
0:45:00Jeannette emphasizes the importance of gathering information beyond assessments, such as social media, when making hiring decisions.
0:46:30Jeannette describes her ideal clients as owner-operators in tech, engineering, finance, and manufacturing industries.
0:47:44Jeannette highlights the legal and financial impact of hiring the wrong people and the benefits of strategic hiring processes.
0:49:42Jeannette provides information on how to connect with her on LinkedIn and access her books on her website.
0:51:15Matt thanks Jeannette for her insights and concludes the conversation.
0:51:23Matt provides closing remarks and information about his agency, Unified Web Design.
Matt Levenhagen
Latest posts by Matt Levenhagen (see all)


    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    Recent Episodes

    Please check out the latest podcast episodes below!

    Unified Web Design

    Translating your brand’s vision into code.

    Learn more