Only hire people by their growth potential?

In an internal distribution list, one of my ex-colleagues in ATC is inquiring whether there is any project inside ATC using .NET primarily since a friend of him, who wants to join ATC, is proficient in C# but weak in C++.

One replies: "Microsoft shouldn't (and doesn't) hire people that have specific skills; instead we hire based on that person's growth potential". Personally, I don't agree with him. Hiring by growth potential is only applicable to campus hire. Not applies to industry hire.

In "Monday Morning Leadership" (Chinese version), the book I just finished yesterday, it emphasized that we should only hire right people. After being employed for 3+ years, I realized that it's very true.

In this case, if C# is the working language and C++ is rarely used, why we hire a C++ expert and let him study C#? It doesn't make sense to shareholders. We should hire a right people (who is a C# expert and has a little C++ basis though).

In another book, titled "Now, Discover Your Strength" (Chinese version), it also emphasized that company should have employees do what they are good at and it's waste of money and ridiculous to hire an expert on Stuff A and training him/her to be an expert on Stuff B.

Comments on “Only hire people by their growth potential?

  1. wushuowei September 22, 2005 07:11 PM

    need to well balance short-term and long-term

  2. Jane September 22, 2005 08:54 PM

    I don't mean to offend , but I guess you want to say "stockholders"...
    And the problem u mentioned in the article , as u said, should be dealt differently in different situation...

  3. geneus September 22, 2005 09:02 PM

    At the first sight of the title, my immediate answer is: No. They need a person to finish the task well.

    BTW, I want to see more articles on your life besides work in this blog, especially besides the professional programming language.

  4. mvm September 22, 2005 11:06 PM


    sorry, just a typo. just changed to "shareholder"

  5. 就你这英文还指导别人? September 23, 2005 01:18 PM


  6. mvm September 23, 2005 03:05 PM






  7. geneus September 23, 2005 03:21 PM




  8. mvm September 23, 2005 03:37 PM

    sorry, 因为其实和前两天王建硕的blog上的那些争论有关联。

  9. weiyi September 24, 2005 03:36 AM

    English is just a language, like Chinese is a language, Japanese is a language, French is a language and Swahili is a language. I don't think anyone has the right to boast just because he or she knows a language well, grew up with a certain language, or picked it up quickly. Languages exist because people need to express themeselves and communicate. Let's not confuse the means with the end.

    Sometimes I fear that I'm slowly turning into a "languageless person," meaning there's not a single language I feel completely comfortable with. I'm increasingly running into things I can't express quite well enough either in English or Chinese. I remember, when I was younger, for a few years I didn't allow myself to read, speak, or think in Chinese at all, except when I talked on the phone with my parents. I was the only Chinese person at my school and eager to fit in. Over the years, however, I've come to appreciate Chinese more and more. Now I read Chinese news, watch Chinese TV, and check out Chinese books from Chinatown. It really is a very beautiful language, so is English, and so I'm sure of any other language in this world.

    It's unfortunate that, at least when people of my generation were taught English, they really didn't try to make it fun. I know I learned English by cramming for TOEFL and GRE :), but I didn't *really* learn it until I allowed myself to feel comfortable with whatever English I knew and just used it (well, it was more like I was forced to).

    so, guess my two cents on learning a language, if any, is the following--throw all your worries outta the window and just have fun with it. The hell with pronunciation and grammar!

  10. philewar October 3, 2005 11:03 PM


    另外,我同意weiyi的观点,要从语言的阅读中找到乐趣(Have fun)。我喜欢阅读那些机警的句子,不管是英文的还是中文的,若能读懂作者的机智,则因智慧上的共鸣而欢喜不已。

  11. sally November 17, 2005 02:10 AM


  12. mvm November 17, 2005 08:13 AM



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